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Eyes on the road: The Steve Cummings Giro diary 2007

Well known for his role in Great Britain's fearsome team pursuit squad, 26 year-old Steve Cummings now has his sights firmly set on the road with Discovery Channel. And it doesn't get much bigger than the Giro d'Italia where Steve is making his Grand Tour debut.

Follow his progress on Cyclingnews as he helps Discovery's bid for Giro glory whilst also keeping one eye on the finish in Milan.

Saturday, May 19, 2007

A whole lotta miles

Hi everyone,

I'm writing this after the longest stage of the Giro - 254 kilometres from Spoleto to Scarperia on Saturday. Despite the early mountains it really wasn't that hard a stage, but a lot of guys still lost time. This was more a result of the distance than anything else; 250 k's is a lot of miles whichever way you look at it, and I was pretty cooked by the finish. Thinking in 'English money' (miles) makes it sound like less, but I've found that during a Grand Tour these long stages can hurt more than a one-day classic.

Friday's stage, where Pinotti took the maglia rosa, was a strange one because the break was actually encouraged to get away. Riders in the peloton were shouting at each other trying to ensure the break stayed away for the whole stage. I guess it was all tactics from teams with GC ambitions, but it makes things easier for us at this time in the race. The Discovery boys are all in good spirits, despite a couple of non-cycling related upsets which I'll tell you about next time.

I'm still working hard for Popo, and with a couple of tough stages approaching we'll see how good he feels. There's no doubt he's a big talent since he's finished third overall in the race before, but despite the expectation he seems very relaxed. We both started our pro careers with the Landbouwkrediet team, and have both been world champions albeit in very different disciplines. [Yaroslav Popovych won the U23 world road race title in 2001, whilst Steve Cummings was team pursuit world champion in 2005.]

Right that's it for today, thanks for tuning in and keep the questions coming. I'll get round to answering some more as soon as I get time.

Be lucky...