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“This year the team asked me to try and get some results for myself. They’ve asked to stay close to Scarponi at the Giro, and then after that they’ll decide whether or not to have me do the Tour de France. I would like to...

Photo: Liquigas-Cannondale

GIRO D'ITALIA

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TOUR DE FRANCE

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VALERIO AGNOLI

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VINCENZO NIBALI

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22.02.2014 @ 09:44 Posted by Joseph Doherty

Valerio Agnoli has always fought for his teammate and best friend Vincenzo Nibali. This is best shown when Nibali won the final mountain stage in the Giro while wearing the maglia rosa to cement overall victory and when Agnoli finished a few minutes later he was in tears. Not because of the freezing conditions, but because he was so pleased for Nibali.

 

Agnoli moved with Nibali to Astana from Liquigas and marshalled him through the Giro’s flat stages and the mountain ones too, after the team fell ill and a large responsibility fell on both the shoulder of Agnoli and teammate Tanel Kangert.

 

However, many were shocked when Agnoli announced he would do the Giro with Scarponi rather than the Tour de France with his best friend who will challenge the might Team Sky and Chris Froome.

 

The men are very close- Agnoli introduced Nibali to the woman who would become his wife later- and when this was announced that Nibali would not ride with Agnoli, the media made a big hype over comments made by Agnoli: “The team separated us and he didn’t lift a finger,”

 

However, Agnoli was quick to point out that nothing was wrong:

 

“That same night, I spoke to Vincenzo on Skype and we just laughed about it,” Agnoli told Cyclingnews at the Tour of Qatar last week. “It was a little parenthesis that was maybe misunderstood by some journalists but everything is ok. I mean, just yesterday evening we were tweeting and joking, which shows that between me and him, the links are strong.”

 

He added why he has been penciled in for the Giro.

 

“This year the team asked me to try and get some results for myself,” he said. “They’ve asked to stay close to Scarponi at the Giro, and then after that they’ll decide whether or not to have me do the Tour de France. I would like to do the Tour, it’s my dream to be there with Vincenzo, but I’ll have to show to the team that I’m going well. Let’s hope I can do that.”

 

As a result he lines up at Catalunya and Trentino this season where he will chase personal success before heading to Ireland to begin the Giro in service of Scarponi and Aru.

 

He knows he is most famous for helping Nibali and makes no secret of his desire to ride with him in France.

 

“When you ride in support of anyone, it’s special, but when it’s someone you have such a strong bond with, it’s even more beautiful to see your friend succeed. Last year’s Giro was very important for me, and I was overcome to see Vincenzo win it,” Agnoli said, adding: “Although it wasn’t achieved just with Valerio Agnoli, but with all the lads.”

 

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