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Zabel Farewell This Friday

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Erik Zabel's legendary career will come to a close by the end of Friday's Sparkassen Münsterland Giro, a 204km race with a nice flat finish. The race's website is plugging the story, but there are plenty of other big names on the startlist. Gerolsteiner will be lining up Forster, Haussler and Wegmann for one of its last races as a team. Silence! Lotto will send Van Avermaet after the sprint. Columbia is frickin loaded as always, with the sprint team of Greipel, Ciolek and Eisel (along with Gerdemann, Burghardt, Martin, Klier, etc. etc. you get the point). CSC sends red-hot Matti Breschel into the fray, with the Schlecks, Kurt Asle-Arvesen, and other studs from their stable. So if Zabel does win, it'll run the risk of looking like one of those post-Tour criteriums where Carlos Sastre outsprints Tom Boonen and the polka dot jersey winner. Anyway, Zabel doesn't like gifts, and a legitimate win can't be completely dismissed. I'll try to find a video stream, though feel free to help me on that one.