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83rd Giro d'Italia - GT

Italy, May 13 - June 4, 2000

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Stage 7 - May 20: Vasto to Teramo, 182 km

Macca wins it for Linda

By Gabriella Ekström, correspondent
David McKenzie
Photo: © AFP

Australian David McKenzie riding for the British team Linda McCartney has been away alone for 120 kilometers. The closest chasing rider is Italian Eddy Mazzoleni riding for Polti who is four minutes down on Macca, and about a minute ahead of the peloton. He had as much as a twelve minute gap on the peloton earlier, but it was slowly eaten up when the peloton started to chase, as they always do. The peloton has yet to reach the top of the mountain but McKenzie is already on his way down after crossing the mountain prize line. He sits huddled up on his bike with his chin close to his bars while descending. Back in the peloton Colombian Victor Hugo Pena from Vitalicio Seguros has punctured and stands at the road side holding up his wheel.

McKenzie is tired now, his body rocks back and forth as he struggles to stay ahead. He is thirsty and asks his car for something to drink. Eddy Mazzoleni is keeping a higher pace, but he hasn't been away as long as McKenzie has either. A quite large group of riders has been dropped close to the top of the mountain. Also they struggle to get back on now. The group contains quite a few Amica Chips riders, and as always there's room for Ceramica Panaria-Gaerne's Luca Cei. Dear Luca, ever the lanterne rouge.

The sky is dark with clouds, but it isn't raining yet and it's only twenty kilometers to go. The riders are lucky today. McKenzie is 2.22 ahead of Mazzoleni who is starting to look tired. McKenzie though is looking a lot better now. His lead is so great that he is not likely to be caught and his win here would be inestimable to Linda McCartney. Eddy Mazzoleni is caught by Lampre and Mobilvetta with four kilometers to go, but the gap to Macca remains the same. They started the chase much too late, in fact it's not much of a chase. It is Ludo Dierckxens from Lampre, in the red, black and yellow Belgian jersey who is chasing, and McKenzie is equally strong.

Keith Lambert in the car is throbbing his fist into the door of the car and the soigneurs are dancing around behind the line. The road up to the finish rises and the Australians elbows are pointing right out from his body, but he doesnt care 'cause he just realized that he is going to win a stage in Giro d'Italia after spending 164 kilometers on his own.


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