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Daily Feedbag

Mostly M-SR coverage today...

  • Paolo Bettini is up to 90 minutes in his training efforts, as the swelling in his knee and ankle subsides. His start is no longer in doubt, though of course what happens next is.
"The injuries are causing intense pain and the situation is worrisome, above all for a race as demanding as Milan-San Remo, when you have to be on the bike for seven hours," Bettini told reporters. "I will go to Milan on Friday and Saturday I will take the start. Whether I make it to San Remo remains to be seen."

"I'm feeling better every day, even if I'm still in pain. It's bad luck that the Milan-San Remo is the longest race of the season. I hope the pain will not hamper my performance."

  • Boonen's pick to win Saturday? Tom Boonen. Quoted in, he says of Petacchi: "I have been following the Tirreno-Adriatico and he has not impressed me very much."
  • As for Boonen's prep:
"Last year, I was forced to just follow on the Poggio - now I know that climb like the back of my hand. I know every turn, and how best to take it. I feel I will be able to take off on that climb myself now. Descending in the company of Trenti and Tossato was very informative, but in the race things sometimes take a different run."
  • CSC for Cancellara? Hey, it's worth a try, nothing else has worked. O'Grady was their original choice before crashing out. And Cancellara has a 4th at Paris-Roubaix, so he's not out of the question.
  • Rebellin is the obvious choice at Gerolsteiner, but Heinrich Haussler and Markus Zberg will be waiting for their chances if Rebellin misses the key moves. This is a confident team right now, I would guess.
Robbie McEwen had a solid start to his season, and was looking closer than ever at taking that first ever huge Classic win at MSR, unfortunately, he got a little, um, aggressive in the finish at the Three Days of West Flanders. Let me rephrase that, he rode Matti Breschel into the barriers and took both of them out - Bresche's story is well-known, but apparently Robbie Mac didn't get away too dandy as ProCycling reports: "I've been really suffering, particularly with my hip, thigh and ribs, I don't feel good at all. I can't pull on the bars and, more than anything, I can't breathe freely. When the pace goes up towards the end of stages I'm having real problems staying in touch. I'm not sure I could even sprint on the flat."

Will there be a Leon Van Bon sighting??