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Bolso de Alimento

  • Andy Hood offers a succinct preview of the Vuelta's final week, where Denis Menchov is eyeing Friday and Saturday's stages as the place(s) to wrap up the title.
  • Lotta talk about Bettini pulling out of the Vuelta, but it hasn't happened. The scuttlebutt is that he hasn't been fighting for the points jersey lately and has his eye on the worlds in less than three weeks. With Daniele Bennati and Alessandro Petacchi both breathing down his neck, and both racing well in recent stages, his chances of retaining the jersey are slim. And it's true, with a potential sprint tomorrow and a clear sprint stage Wednesday, in all likelihood Bettini will be forced to put his rainbow jersey back on, one last time.
  • Tons of racing happened/finished up this past weekend:
  • Romain Feillu edged Adrian Palomares Vilaplana by less than a second to win the overall Tour of Britain. Toto Commesso came close to winning the final stage.
  • Johan Van Summeren, one of Cycling's true selfless draft horses, got his own glory for once with a blistering attack 3km from the finish to win the Tour of Poland's final stage and overall classification. I like this even better than Sanchez' stage!
  • Robbie McEwen won Paris-Brussels again, which must be a pretty dull race if guys are spending five hours in the saddle for a 65-man bunch sprint.
  • In Germany, it was Fabian Wegmann winning the Rund um die Nürnberger Altstadt.
  • In France, Peter Velits (Wiesenhof) overcame Daniele Nardello to win the 75th GP de Fourmies.
  • And finally, at the season-opening Steenbergcross, Sven Nys took only 7th, while Niels Albert won.
  • Head-scratcher: so Erik Zabel is cleared to ride in the worlds, following his confession to doping, while Alejandro Valverde is not? Is it because he won't confess? Is it necessary to force a confession? Did it ever occur to the UCI that maybe he doesn't have anything to confess? Maybe it's time for them to send in the Spanish Inquisition:

And since I started it, here's part II. You're welcome.