Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Ivan Basso Checks In......

Ivan Basso (Liquigas-Cannondale) has declared himself disappointed with his results in March, as he failed to make the impact he wished in both Tirreno-Adriatico and the Volta a Catalunya. After an effervescent opening to the season that included victory in February’s GP Lugano, the Italian fell short of his expectations in the past month.

“I’m the first one not to be satisfied with what I gathered in March and in such cases it’s right to recognise that,” Basso said. “My objectives were, and are, to ride the spring at a high level.”

Basso was 7th on the queen mountain stage to Andorra in the Volta a Catalunya, and would finish in the same position overall. While Basso was not content with this result, nor with his 4th place finish at Tirreno, he was able to console himself with the knowledge that his form is currently more advanced than it was this time last year.

“My athletic performance was positive, better than it was in the spring of 2010,” Basso said. “For this reason the fact that I didn’t win doesn’t worry me: the condition is there. Now I will tackle the April races, with routes that on paper are more demanding and more suited to my characteristics, so I’m convinced I can do well.”

This optimism was echoed by Liquigas trainer Paolo Slongo, who believes that Basso’s qualities of endurance will yield greater dividends as the year progresses.

“Ivan’s resistance is his strong point,” Slongo said. “We can compare his motor to a diesel: the peak performance does not come immediately but over long distances. The athletic tests that we did before and after the two races confirmed Ivan’s good condition, in line with what we expected. I’m convinced that if Tirreno and Catalonia had offered more stages with summit finishes, the results could have been different.

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