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2001 Vuelta

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News for September 5, 2002

Edited by Jeff Jones and Chris Henry

Saiz eager for Beloki victory

ONCE directeur sportif Manolo Saiz has made clear his eagerness to see Joseba Beloki rise to the top of the podium in a major race. Second in this year's Tour de France, and third place in the previous two editions, Beloki has yet to conquer a grand tour. The ONCE team will once again be aiming for the Vuelta title this month, with Beloki riding as designated leader. Supporting him will be a strong team headed also by Igor Gonzalez de Galdeano, 5th overall in this year's Tour and wearer of the yellow jersey after ONCE's victory in the team time trial.

"What Beloki must do is to realize his potential and win a major race," Saiz told Spanish daily Marca. "But we are conscious that facing Beloki are two other riders who have already have won (the Vuelta), Heras and Casero, as well as former Giro winner Simoni."

Saiz confirmed Beloki's role as leader. "It's necessary to bet on Beloki. He has been second in the Tour, and this is a mountainous Vuelta and he is the one that is better suited to the terrain."

The competition for the overall in the Vuelta looks to be quite stiff this year, though Saiz's ONCE team are favored to win the team time trial in Valencia, just as they did during this year's Tour de France.

More Vuelta team selections

With the start of the Vuelta coming up on Saturday, teams are announcing their final rosters for the three week tour.


Simone Bertoletti, Massimo Codol, Juan Manuel Garate, Milan Kadlec, Mariano Piccoli, Zbigniew Spruch, Jan Svorada, Pavel Tonkov, Johan Verstrepen. Team managers: Maurizio Piovani, Brent Copeland.

Tacconi Sport:

Gabriele Balducci, Paolo Bossoni, Patrick Calcagni, Diego Ferrari, Andrei Hauptman, Zoran Klemencic, Peter Luttenberger, Silvester Szmyd, Pietro Zucconi. Reserves: Marco Gili, Nicola Minali. DS: Vittorio Algeri, Pietro Turchetti.


Mikel Artetxe, David Etxebarria, Iker Flores, Gorka Gerrikagoitia, Roberto Laiseka, Alberto López de Munain, Alberto Martinez, Iban Mayo, Haimar Zubeldia. DS: Julian Gorospe.


Francisco Mancebo, Juan Miguel Mercado, Aitor Osa, Santiago Blanco, Vicente Garcia Acosta, Ivan Gutiérrez, Juan Antonio Flecha, Pablo Lastras, Jon Odriozola.

Also see: Vuelta start list

(All rights reserved/Copyright Knapp Communications Pty Limited 2002)


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