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Tenax dominates rain-soaked Tre Valli with Murro

Christian Murro and his Pro-Continental Tenax-Salmilano team dominated the 87th Tre Valli Varesine in a day that seemed more like late October than mid-August. Heavy rains hammered the Lombardia roads and spirits of the riders but a group of 19 prevailed while the rest of the gruppo said 'ciao' to the humbling weather.

In the group with Murro was team-mate Gabriele Bosisio, who is in excellent form and has proved so by winning the Giro del Lazio and the Olympic tester in Beijing. The Lecchese hammered on the front to help set up the eventually race winning attack by Murro around 12 kilometres remaining. "I repaid the favour with pleasure," explained Bosisio to La Gazzetta dello Sport. "If it was not for him passing me his bicycle I would have never won the Giro del Lazio. Only after arriving at the finish did I feel a little tired."

"I have never taken on so much rain in my life," said the day's winner. The 29 year-old came to the line in head-to-head sprint against Alessandro Bertolini (Serramenti PVC Diquigiovanni-Selle Italia) in rain-darkened conditions. "It is a huge pleasure to think that my name is on the list of winners for this important race." Past winners include Garzelli, Di Luca, Rebellin, Saronni, Moser, Merckx and Coppi.

He is in search of a contract for 2008 and the win in Varese will surely help him find a job.

"My first thought was for my dad who has not been around for years. His death was very destabilizing for me. I had stopped riding my bike to help my mom and my brother." Is he dreaming of the World Championships' Squadra Azzurra team? "The maglia azzurra requires consistency. More realistically, I hope to ride the next Giro d'Italia. It means everything for our small squad."

Damiano Cunego was one of the riders to DNF the day and reckoned it was for good reason. "It did not make sense to continue. I want to prepare well for the Vuelta [a España]. I am heading there with the desire to win a stage. In Germany [the Deutschland Tour - ed.] I searched for a stage win and I scored. So..."