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2001 Vuelta

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News for September 6, 2002

Edited by Jeff Jones and Chris Henry

Fagnini will miss Vuelta

Telekom has announced that Gian Matteo Fagnini, Erik Zabel's key leadout man, will miss the upcoming Vuelta a España. Citing stomach problems as the primary reason for Fagnini's withdrawal, the team will instead send Robert Bartko. Team doctor Lothar Heinrich explained Fagnini's situation, saying "Gian Matteo has complained for four days about stomach pain. His test results clearly indicate that he should not ride."

Although Bartko will leave Telekom at the end of the year to join the Dutch Rabobank team, he was nonetheless appreciative of Telekom's invitation to ride the Vuelta. "I am pleased the team has the confidence in me for such an important race," Bartko said on the team's web site.

Mapei-Quick Step for Vuelta

Mapei-Quick Step team manager Alvaro Crespi has announced the selection for the Vuelta Espa–a. The team includes world champion Oscar Freire, who says his objective will be "battling against the best sprinters to win stages, particularly during the first part of the race." Freire, like many others, will also be using the Vuelta as preparation for the upcoming World Championships in Zolder.

The Vuelta will also serve as the first grand tour outing for Great Britain's Charly Wegelius. The full team lineup is as follows:

Elio Aggiano, Davide Bramati, David Cañada Gracia, Dario Cioni, Oscar Freire Gomez, Pedro Horrillo Muñoz, Andrea Noè, Eddy Ratti & Charly Wegelius. Team directors: Jesus Suarez Cueva, Roberto Damiani (Sept. 7-16), Fernandez Rodriguez Matxin (Sept. 17-29).

Also see: Vuelta start list

Vuelta blood controls all negative

The 207 riders enrolled in this year's Vuelta were subjected to mandatory blood tests on Thursday morning between 7:30 and 9:30am. None of those tested was declared unfit to start. The results of the analysis of urine samples taken from the riders are expected to be known by Saturday.

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


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