Liberty Seguros for Milan San Remo
This year there is no World Cup, but the Milan-San Remo continues and the Cipressa, the Poggio and the 294 kilometres await the peloton of the ProTour, where Liberty Seguros-Würth will take part with Allan Davis as their trump card.
What was previously the start of the World Cup is now the continuation of the ProTour. The third trial that gains points in the ProTour shall take place this Saturday with the best teams of the peloton and the fittest classics-lovers. The spring classics begin with the Milan-San Remo, a special race for a special type of rider. Liberty Seguros-Würth will be there with two different types of classics-lovers, Allan Davis and Ángel Vicioso, two possibilities for two different situations in the race.
The rest of the team was decided just today. Finally Manolo Saiz chose Carlos Barredo as the eighth man on the team to compete this Saturday in the Milan-San Remo race. The man from Asturias will fill the place vacated by Igor González de Galdeano, who had to pull out of the Paris-Nice, and is still awaiting the results of an analysis which was carried out in Vitoria to investigate his poor physical condition. Jan Hruska, who was the first reserve, also returns home, victim of another flu that this month is decimating the group.
The team will be as follows: Allan Davis, Ángel Vicioso, Görg Jaksche, Aaron Kemps, Michele Scarponi, Giampaolo Caruso, Sergio Paulinho and Carlos Barredo.
Davis in action! Courtesy Liberty Seguros
Spotlight on Alan Davis
Last year he made his debut with Liberty Seguros, and he did so winning a stage, the first that he rode wearing the blue colours. At the start of the new season, he was in fact the most honoured rider on the team, with 5 victories and on over 30 occasions he was placed among the first 10 of the stage. A great speed rider with great capacity and experience, even though he is only 23 years old.
All the same, you don’t often see kangaroos in the Basque Country, but Allan Davis is an exception. He has lived in Oiartzun for the past two and a half years. He arrived here from Italy, after 5 years, where the Australians have an amateur cyclist development program. His brother stayed in the Panaria team, he is with Liberty Seguros-Würth and looking forward to “enjoying and doing well as a cyclist".
He doesn’t like travelling at all, and being away from his wife and two-year old daughter, even less. But he realises that it is part of his work and that he wants to be remembered as a “good professional”.
Ángel Vicioso ready for Milan San Remo
The Liberty Seguros website interviews Angel Vicioso who aims to steer Alan Davis to victory -
Ángel Vicioso passed his first test of the season, the Tyrrhenian, with flying colours. He returned to competition after a long period out of action, since September of last year, when he rode in the Tour of Poland. The rider from Aragon once again sees a clear horizon ahead and looks forward to a great performance from his team In the Milan-San Remo, next Saturday.
How did you see yourself in the Tyrrhenian?
I thought that, after such a long time not riding, I wouldn’t be so good, but as I had trained well this winter and I have taken good care of myself, I am really excited and more enthusiastic than ever, after such a long time out of cycling.
Since the fall in the Tour you didn’t manage to recuperate. What happened?
We think that when I fell one of my shoe-plates moved and that day and the following days I was pedalling in a bad position until I damaged the cartilage in my right knee. I needed a lot of rehabilitation time to get back on form. Now I can’t believe that I can go out and train every day and nothing hurts.
How do you feel in the run up to your next race, the Milan-San Remo?
The San Remo is a very complicated race where you have to overcome the Cipressa and the Poggio to have any possibilities, but it is long-distance and I really like it. Although, I don’t think I am fully prepared, because my objective is to be on form in the Northern classics and the Vuelta of the Basque Country, and we are still almost a month away from these trials. I’ve still got to lose around 2 kilos to be in shape.
So your mission is to work for Allan Davis?
Well, it would be ideal to arrive in a small group that included Allan. In that case I would do all the work necessary for him, because he is in great shape and he is one of the favourites to win.
How did you see your rivals in the Tyrrhenian?
I was most impressed by Freire, because he is two points ahead of the rest, and the Fassa team to pass over the Cipressa and the Poggio. That will be Petacchi’s weapon.
Who is the favourite then?
I put my money on Freire again, because he’s got 100 metres that will be impossible for anyone to reach.
And where do you place Liberty Seguros-Würth?
Well, I think we have a very competitive team, because Caruso and I can launch attacks and Allan can make a sprint arrival. The team should enter into a small group with Allan.
Do you see any possibility of a rider arriving alone and there being no sprint?
It’s not such a long-shot, you know, because Bettini was in the Tyrrhenian to train and he was looking good. Also, in his team they have Boonen for the sprint, so he will do everything possible to break up the race. And if that weren’t enough, there is also Valverde for the attacks.
Do you see Alejandro with possibilities of winning on Saturday?
I see him on the same level as Bettini, at least from what I have seen on the telly, because I haven’t ridden with him, but he is a great cyclist.
A Fallen angel! Courtesy Liberty Seguros
Spotlight on Angel Vicioso
Born in Calatayud, and now living in Alhama in Aragón, he has been a professional since 1999. There hasn’t been a year when he hasn’t added another triumph to his palmares, also in his first year with Liberty Seguros he triumphed on winning two stages of the Euskal Bizikleta. Used to the ways of Manolo Saiz, it is his third year under his orders, and those of Heras, with whom he had already ridden in 1999 and 2000.
The Miguel Indurain Gran Premio is his race, he has won it on two occasions and came second in 2003. He has always been one of the best riders of the national peloton, and at 27 he is a real veteran.
An admirer of his fellow countryman Escartín, he would have been a carpenter if he hadn’t taken up cycling. But he took it up at 13 and he has never looked back because “it is my work and I like it”.