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Pearl Izumi

85th Giro d'Italia (GT)

Italy, May 11-June 2, 2002

Stage profile    Start list    Results

Stage 9 - May 21: Tivoli-Caserta, 201 km

Start time: 12:15 CEST
Estimated finish time: 17:10 CEST

Complete Live Report

14:30 CEST

Welcome to stage 9 of the Giro d'Italia, a 201 kilometre journey from Tivoli to Caserta. Today's stage is shorter and easier than yesterday's marathon, and is certainly suited to the sprinters. Jens Heppner's Telekom team should have no problem in controlling matters in order to keep the pink jersey on his shoulders for a little longer.

Today will decided whether Stefano Garzelli will be allowed to remain in the race, after the results of his counter-analysis become known. The testing in Lausanne has just started, so we can expect an answer by this evening. Then things could get interesting, with all sorts of possible scenarios. If Garzelli is positive, then he will be out of the race according to the rules. He is currently in second place and wearing the mountains jersey.

14:40 CEST - 88 km

For now, Garzelli is simply concentrating on getting to the end of this stage, which is being run in warmer conditions in southern Italy. The main action of the day so far has been the escape of three riders: Mariano Piccoli (Lampre), Ruben Marin (Selle Italia), and Domenico Gualdi (Formaggi Trentini) who attacked after 16 kilometres. They have managed to build a 4'40 lead, with the peloton being controlled by Telekom and Acqua e Sapone.

At the Intergiro sprint (km 73.4), Piccoli won ahead of Marin and Gualdi.

14:55 CEST - 98 km/110 km to go

As they approach the feedzone at Melfa di Roccasecca (km 109), the advantage of Piccoli, Marin and Gualdi has dropped to 3'45. The peloton doesn't want to have to chase too hard at the end of a long stage to bring them back in order to set things up for a mass sprint.

15:10 CEST - 112 km/89 km to go

The first abandonment of today's stage is Mauro Zanetti from Alessio, who pulled out at the feed zone.

The three leaders, who have been away for nearly 100 kilometres now, have a lead of 3'35.

15:25 CEST - 128 km/73 km to go

After a first hour at 34.6 km/h, the pace has steadily lifted throughout the stage, and is now up to 40.7 km/h. However, Mariano Piccoli, Ruben Marin and Domenico Gualdi are still in the lead, holding a 3'50 advantage to the peloton with less than two hours of racing to go.

15:34 CEST - 133 km/68 km to go

In the break, Piccoli drops back to his team car for another bidon - it's a very warm day today and riders are going through more water than usual. The peloton is rolling along at a brisk pace of around 43 km/h, and is slowly catching the breakaways. The latest gap is 2'50, as Telekom sets the tempo in front.

15:45 CEST - 143 km/58 km to go

With less than 60 kilometres to go, the peloton is closing in rapidly on this three man breakaway, which has definitely not given up hope yet. However it's not going to work as they have just a 2'31 lead.

Mariano Piccoli decides that they're not going fast enough, and after a quick look at the parcours he attacks Marin and Gualdi who cannot react. So Piccoli is going to be the 'rabbit' today like Guidi yesterday. He is certainly the strongest of the three breakaways.

15:51 CEST - 151 km/50 km to go

Gualdi and Marin have decide to work a bit harder to catch Piccoli, who has a 20 second lead on them after attacking to stir things up. The peloton is now at 2'40.

16:05 CEST - 161 km/40 km to go

Piccoli is holding his 20 second to Gualdi and Marin, but the now separated trio are being rapidly caught by the peloton, which is in chase formation now. 1'45 is the latest gap between Piccoli and the peloton, and he surely won't last. However, he's enjoying the limelight and there are a lot of people out today to cheer him on.

16:18 CEST - 171 km/30 km to go

Mariano Piccoli, who has been riding on his own for the last 30 km and in the lead for a total of 155 km, has decided to continue to stay in front for as long as possible, as the peloton closes to within 30 seconds of the lone Lampre rider. He does take some time to chat with the TV moto, and finally stops pedalling hard to wait for the inevitable. He is caught with 28 km to go.

16:25 CEST - 176 km/25 km to go

We haven't seen a bunch sprint since stage 4, when McEwen got one over Cipollini. Today the showdown will happen again, with a possible chance for Massimo Strazzer (Phonak), whose teammates are leading the peloton, along with Formaggi Trentini and Acqua e Sapone.

16:29 CEST - 181 km/20 km to go

The Lotto team are positioned near the front with McEwen in tow. Cipollini is further back at the moment, but is moving up. Strazzer punctures, but there is enough time for him to get back if he has his teammates to help.

Marco Pantani is also near the front, looking quite happy today.

16:35 CEST - 186 km/15 km to go

Cristian Gasperoni (Acqua e Sapone) pulls off the front after a long day of tempo setting. He gets a push from a Telekom rider to help him stay in the peloton, as he was also helping their cause.

Strazzer is back in the peloton, and moving forward with the help of a couple of teammates.

Currently, Lampre-Daikin is setting the tempo.

16:40 CEST - 189 km/12 km to go

Lotto moves up level with Lampre as the race enters its final phase. Marco Pantani's team is also at the front, keeping him out of mischief.

A very bandaged Tyler Hamilton gets an escort to the front courtesy of CSC.

16:44 CEST - 194 km/7 km to go

Cipollini's Acqua e Sapone team moves to the front now, as is customary in the final kilometres. There is a fall just before a corner, and it is Degano (Panaria) who needs a new wheel. He looks disappointed, as he was in a good position for the sprint. He is not injured though.

Lotto are doing a good job for McEwen, and it's going to be an interesting battle.

16:47 CEST - 196 km/5 km to go

With 5 km to go, no team has managed to establish its train on the front. Rabobank (for De Jongh) is the next to try, as Marc Streel (Landbouwkrediet) attacks very ambitiously.

16:47 CEST - 198 km/3 km to go

Steel is chased down by Lotto, with Detilloux and Verbruggen. McEwen now has Cipollini's wheel.

Now it's Scirea, Derganc, Lotto, Colombo, Lotto with 3 km to go. Streel doesn't last long

16:50 CEST - 200 km/1 km to go

1 km to go and it's a Lotto/Acqua e Sapone train. McEwen still has Cipollini's wheel. Guidi and Strazzer are up there too.

16:51 CEST - 201 km/0 km to go

Lombardi does the final leadout, Cipollini comes over him and gets it comfortably from McEwen, Moreni and Guidi. Cipollini waited for longer than in Strasbourg before coming off Lombardi's wheel, and had over a bike length this time to win his third stage in this year's Giro.

Cipollini also gets back the points jersey from Strazzer, who keeps his Intergiro jersey (and still looks happy). Garzelli gets another mountains jersey, and can at least be partially comforted by the fact that his test results for the stages in Esch and Strasbourg came back negative. But he's still waiting for the B test from Liege.


1 Mario Cipollini (Ita) Acqua e Sapone
2 Robbie McEwen (Aus) Lotto-Adecco
3 Cristian Moreni (Ita) Alessio  
4 Fabrizio Guidi (Ita) Team Coast 
5 Ivan Quaranta (Ita) Index Alexia 
6 Angelo Furlan (Ita) Alessio 
7 Moreno Di Biase (Ita) Formaggi-Trentini
8 Mykhaylo Khalilov (Ukr) Colombia-Selle Italia
9 Sven Teutenberg (Ger) Phonak Hearing Systems 
10 Miguel Angel Meza (Mex) Team Colpack-Astro 
11 Steven De Jongh (Ned) Rabobank 
12 Zoran Klemencic (Slo) Tacconi Sport-Emmegi 
13 Massimo Strazzer (Ita) Phonak Hearing Systems
14 Rene' Haselbacher (Aut) Gerolsteiner 
15 Giovanni Lombardi (Ita) Acqua & Sapone-Cantina Tollo
17 Yuri Mitlushenko (Ukr) Landbouwkrediet-Colnago 
18 Mathew Hayman (Aus) Rabobank
19 Lars Michaelsen (Den) Team Coast
20 Isaac Galvez Lopez (Spa) Kelme-Costa Blanca 

General classification after stage 9

1 Jens Heppner (Ger) Team Telekom                      45.52.24
2 Stefano Garzelli (Ita) Mapei-Quick Step                  3.33
3 Yaroslav Popovych (Ukr) Landbouwkrediet-Colnago          3.50
4 Eddy Mazzoleni (Ita) Tacconi Sport-Emmegi                3.57
5 Francesco Casagrande (Ita) Fassa Bortolo                 4.08
6 Angel Vicioso Arcos (Spa) Kelme-Costa Blanca             4.09
7 Paolo Savoldelli (Ita) Index Alexia                      4.27
8 Gilberto Simoni (Ita) Saeco-Longoni Sport                4.29
9 Wladimir Belli (Ita) Fassa Bortolo                       4.39
10 Pietro Caucchioli (Ita) Alessio                         4.41
11 Juan Carlos Dominguez (Spa) Phonak Hearing Systems      4.43
12 Fernando Escartin (Spa) Team Coast                      4.44
13 Tyler Hamilton (USA) Team CSC Tiscali                   4.46
14 Cadel Evans (Aus) Mapei-Quick Step                      4.47
15 Aitor Gonzalez Jimenez (Spa) Kelme-Costa Blanca         4.49
16 Davide Rebellin (Ita) Gerolsteiner                      4.52
17 Dario Frigo (Ita) Tacconi Sport-Emmegi                  5.02
18 Gianni Faresin (Ita) Gerolsteiner                       5.05
19 Michael Boogerd (Ned) Rabobank                          5.08
20 Rik Verbrugghe (Bel) Lotto-Adecco                       5.10


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