Scott UpdateSabine has sent this report on Scott's progress.
"Scott is slowly getting better. Today the stitches from the operation were removed. I was a bit shocked to see the size of the cut. 22! stitches. The student nurse heling to get the stitches out was even more impressed though. The poor thing went all pale and had to sit down to keep from fainting. Guess being a cyclist's wife is good preparation for medical studies. I've seen quite a bit of blood, bruised, cuts etc, in the years we've been together.
Over the weekend, Scott had a few visitors, which included the Palmans people who brought the biggest fruit basket I've ever seen. It had tired him that much that the doctors advised not to have any more visits this week. Today he has made a small walk in the hallway with me and he has spent the rest of the day resting.
The team physiotherapists working with Dr. Rousseau are starting the rehabilitation treatment today or tomorrow. The x-rays taken yesterday still have to be analysed in detail but the first look shows clearly blocked vertebrae in the lower back. This causes heavy pain which upsets Scott. The headache is getting better and Scott has started to read a few emails send via our pages. It is good to see so many people care!"
Pantani sickMarco Pantani, withdrew from the Tour of Romandie because of a cold and a sore throat but could race in the Giro del Friuli before the Giro d'Italia. The 'Friuli' will start on May 12 in Aquileia and finish at Grado, a distance of 200 kms. Yesterday the Mercatone Uno-Bianchi rider started on a course of antibiotics to combat the sore throat that has affected him since the last stage of the Giro del Trentino. Meanwhile, Sports Director Giuseppe Martinelli will take the time trial bike to Cesenatico so that Pantani can test it in the next few days on the roads around his home.
Olano InterviewQ. Although a minor race, you easily won at Rioja.
A. Yes, one could say that it was like that, although all races are difficult to win. It wasn't what was planned, but little by little things continue to advance. I was with the best on the climbs and more than the result, I'm satisfied with the my conclusions.
Q. What are those conclusions?
A. I don't want to say that one can draw definite conclusions, but I do notice that the less I work, the less I ask from my body, the better the results.
Q. You mean to say that the less you train, the better you feel?
A. Yes, that's it. This year I'm training less and the less I do, the more I perform.
Q. From what you say, you are in better form than last year.
A. I didn't expect to be going so well already, but we should not be too hasty. Things are going like they should.
Q. How did you feel in front of the peloton, on a climb? You must have forgotten what it feels like.
A. It's not like that either, man! I suffered on the climb of Herrera, that's clear, but my strength responded. I didn't expect to be with the best and even less with the climbers. My pulse was where it should be.
Q. If victories give strength, in your case maybe you needed one. You hadn't won anything this year.
A. No. I'm as motivated as before la Vuelta a La Rioja. The better the level, the closer to the wins. I feel good with myself, but it doesn't matter how good you feel, you need to show it.
Q. In other words that everybody is more at ease. You and the team?
A. I'm as relaxed as before. maybe the others needed it more. I know how I am and I am well.
Q. This year you have chosen a calendar, not as demanding as on previous dates. Why?
A. I haven't done it, not to coincide with my rivals in France. Everyone chooses their calendar and I did it at the start of the season. I haven't changed it, like others have.
Tasmanian rider injuredMatt Conn writes sadly from Tasmania that on the evening of May 5, well known Launceston cyclist Ray Walters was involved in a serious road accident while training. Walters was hit by a car while riding along a stretch of the West Tamar Highway, approximately 15 kms north of Launceston. He was on his way to catch the local training bunch, after missing them when he had to stop and tighten his seat post clamp.
Walters was transported to Launceston General Hospital by ambulance suffering head and chest injuries. After being stabilised, he was transported by air to the Royal Hobart Hospital (200km south) where they have a specialist neurosurgery unit. His condition is described as being serious but stable.
The training group that he was to meet arrived on the scene of the accident just as the ambulance was leaving, and many of his close friends were shocked when they recognised the bike, or what was left of it. Ray is a very well known and greatly liked member of the Tasmanian cycling community, and any regular visitors to the Tasmanian Christmas carnivals, would certainly be familiar with his consistent riding from the middle marks. There aren't many races in the state that he hasn't won during his carreer.
We are all hoping he is back on the recovery trail as quickly as is possible.