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2001 Vuelta

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57th Vuelta a España Preview

Spain, September 7- 29, 2002

Vai Dani! Danilo Di Luca's Vuelta diary


Danilo Di Luca
Photo: © Sirotti
Click for larger image

Nationality: Italian
Team: Saeco-Longoni Sport

Italian speedster Danilo Di Luca from the Saeco-Longoni Sport Team will be writing a diary for Cyclingnews.com during this year's Vuelta a España. The classy rider has been in excellent form leading into the 2002 Vuelta, with a recent victory in the Giro Del Veneto showing he has hit Spain's major tour with motivation and speed. With his consistent performances in Italy during August, Di Luca is looking to the Vuelta with confidence. "The Giro del Veneto was my last race before the Vuelta... we've got big plans for the Spanish race. Simoni will be going for the overall and I'm looking for stage wins."

Danilo Di Luca Photo: © Sirotti
Click for larger image

First, some background: Di Luca was born in Spoltore, a small hilltop town in central Italy, in 1976. His first encounter with a bicycle was at age four, he entered his first race when he was eight (and won) and then continued with his racing and chalked up many victories along the way. He finished second in the national Pupil's Cup in 1992, and went on to win Il Giro dei Friuli and the Giro d'Italia for junior riders in 1998. After winning the bronze medal in the Under 23 road race at the World Championships in Valkenburg, 1998, he moved on to the Elite category, where he has become one of Italy's most promising young professionals.

Last year Di Luca raced for the Cantina Tollo team and his season was interrupted in June by surgery for acute appendicitis, but he went on to race in the Vuelta and he won the sodden, epic Giro di Lombardia in October. This year he signed with the Saeco-Longoni Sport team and will be highly motivated, particularly after the team's exclusion from this year's Tour de France. For this year's Vuelta, Cyclingnews will be providing regular diary entries from a rider who is certain to be a contender on several stages, as well as riding in support of overall GC contender Gilberto Simoni.


Danilo Di Luca's official website - www.danilodiluca.com

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