was well aware that sprint finishes in rainy weather like today's do not suit him, but nonetheless had a go. He didn't succeed, and finished 14th only, 8 places adrift his teammate Freddy Rodriguez, but sounded satisfied with finishing in the top places, and didn't give up his fighting attitude, such that he promised he'll try again. Maybe the next time will be the good one. Provided his teammates keep helping him the way they have done so far in this race "My teammates are extraordinary, wonderful ones. We are a "super-team", and I hope I can soon dedicate them a stage victory" were the words D’Amore used to thank his “Water & Soap” comrades.
But to clinch a stage won't be easy to him, especially if Alessandro Petacchi keeps the winning form that he displayed one more time. The Italian didn't have to wait too long for redemption: 24 hours after losing at Spoleto, he was back with a bang, and a very easy win, and with his team providing unmatchable support as usual (with Thursday's stage as exception): "Despite losing the stage, I was fine yesterday, and so was today. And my teammates have been great again. Fassa showed that they are a great team, maybe even more than in previous days, as today was a difficult one. They took the race into their hands and rode tempo in the last part, until 200m from the line, and you all can see what they did, in particular when they chased down Astarloa, which was no easy thing as the man won the World Championships thanks to a similar move. Marco (Velo) closed down the gap to Astraloa, then I started the sprint very early, but with the advantage of being in a good position, and I think this was my best sprint to date in this Giro, I was really hungry for victory today".
In the last days, more than rider was critical of the organizers because of stage finishes and circuits they deemed too dangerous, and when asked his opinion about it, Petacchi responded that "It's clear that a race final with several turns is dangerous, but the biggest danger today came from the weather, and the poor visibility due to the heavy rains falling, in the descent in particular. Thankfully my teammates did a wonderful team work in the last 10 kilometres".
The previous day a mistake from Matteo Tosatto in the leadout train was the main cause of Petacchis’ defeat; but this time no Fassaman made any mistakes, and the man from Castelfranco Veneto, that turned 30 today, did a helluva job, and got a win by “Ale-Jet” as birthday gift: “The last part of the stage was extremely dangerous. We decided to move up front and set a fast tempo to keep the peloton stretched out in order to avoid pile-ups. Then Alessandro did the rest”.
Phonak’s Massimo Strazzer couldn’t get higher than 21st, and in post-stage interviews said that “Today’s sprint was very difficult. I started from the back of the pack, and tried to gain some positions. But it was too hard for me and I didn’t succeed. That’s a pity as even though rainy weather is not my favourite one, my legs were fine today. A true pity indeed”.
Domina Vacanze’s Andrus Aug of Estonia is out of the Giro as he hit the asphalt after bumping the rear wheel of Latvian teammate Andris Nauduzs, right after both guys crossed the line. But he’ll likely ne off his bike for the rest of the season too, as the man sustained fractures to his collarbone, pelvis, and the little finger of his left hand.