Riding for the heart in Liège

By Miwako Sasaki

The third Contre la montre pour le coeur (Time trial for the heart) was held in Liège last Friday. It was a charity event of La Fondation de Recherche en Cardiologie Pediatrique, a medical foundation researching children's heart problems, and was organised by the Association Professionelle des Journalistes Sportifs de Liège-Luxembourg.

The event was a two-rider time trial, which paired a professional rider and a person from the Wallonne region. It was 1.6 km around Place Saint-Lambert, where Liège-Bastogne-Liège started on Sunday.

Many professional riders took part in the charity event, and enjoyed riding with their new 'teammate' under the clear sky. Thierry Marichal and Rik Verbrugghe (Cofidis), David Etxebarria, Angel Vicioso and Jose Antonio Redondo (Liberty Seguros), Steve Morabito and Jonathan Patrick McCarty (Phonak), Philippe Gilbert, Christophe Detilloux and Frederic Finot (Française des Jeux), Jean-Claude Lebeau (Landbouwkrediet) and Christophe Brandt (Davitamon-Lotto) were all present, and all of them rode Liège-Bastogne-Liège. Wilfried Cretskens, Kevin De Weert (Quick Step), and Maxime Monfort (Cofidis) were also there, although they didn't start Sunday's Classic. Some pro riders rode two or three times with their other teammates, so there ended up being around 30 pairs in Place St-Lambert.

There was no Italian rider for the charity event at all this year, but instead of them, Italian consul Riccardo Rusconi did it. He wore the azzuri colours, and rode the time trial with Christophe Detilloux. The Giro d'Italia will come soon to Liège, and the presentation will held in Place Saint-Lambert on Thursday, May 4.

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