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“It had become a five-year obsession. I always knew a win would come, and I was sick of the criticism: Pirazzi gets it wrong, Pirazzi’s attack comes to nothing.  Eveyrone has his way of riding," Pirazzi says

Photo: Sirotti






28.05.2014 @ 20:59 Posted by Emil Axelgaard

Stefano Pirazzi continued the fantastic Giro d'Italia for the small Bardiani team when he won today's stage 17 of the race. Having often been criticized for his many frutiless attacks, the Italian was pleased to silence his critics on one of the biggest scenes in the cycling world.


Despite his young age, Stefano Pirazzi is already a household name in the cycling world but his grow to fame has now been based on his many wins. Heading into today's stage 17 of the Giro d'Italia, he had actually never won a single race.


He brought his dorught ot an end by producing a splendid performance in the 26-rider breakaway that ended up deciding the stage. Having teammates Nicola Boem and Marco Canola at his side, he made sure that lone attacker Thomas De Gendt never got too far ahead and then bridged the gap on the final climb.


More riders joined from behind and finally a 5-rider group had formed. Knowing that he was up against faster riders, Pirazzi attacked twice and the second time he got the decisive gap, crossing the line in solo fashion to take the first victory of his career.


Having often faced criticism for his very aggressive riding, the Italian enjoyed showing his critics that he can do things right in a complictaed finale.


“In the first hour, it was very fast and intense," he said. "There were attacks on the climbs,  and that’s how I got into the breakaway. In the closing kilometres there was five of us. On paper I was the slowest, but after many hours of riding at high speed, the others lacked their usual finishing speed.


"De Gendt frightened me more than the others. When he goes, it’s difficulty to bring him back.  When he attacked, I spoke to my team-mate [Nicola Boem] and told him to try to bring him back, and then I tried to save as much energy as possible for the finish.


"I attacked with 2.5 km to go, but they chased me down. I attacked again 1.2 km form the line, and stayed away. I chose the right moment.


“It had become a five-year obsession. I always knew a win would come, and I was sick of the criticism: Pirazzi gets it wrong, Pirazzi’s attack comes to nothing.  Eveyrone has his way of riding. I’ve always tried to put on a show.


"I turned pro very young and I had to learn the ropes. Winning today was very important for me, and, in my emotion,  made a gesture on the finish line. I regret it now and I would like to apologise.


“Last year I was on the attack a lot to win the Maglia Azzurra, but this year the goal was to win a stage. I’ve only joined two breakaways in this Giro, and today went well for me and I’ve done it. I’ve had  a good Giro so far, and there is still a mountain time trial to come, which I’ll try to ride well.


"It is a liberation. After five years I have finally won my first race and it happened in the Giro. It’s a success that means a lot because few people know how much I have suffered these last few days. Today when I was in the break with Canola and Boem, we rode as a top team, all focused on the win. They and the entire team were fundamental. It’s still difficult to believe that it happened."


”The guys in the break were perfect and Pirazzi was super in the finale," sports director Mirko Rossato said. "He found the time and attacked at the right point. He really deserved this win and I hope it will only be the first of his career."


"This is an amazing triple," sports director Roberto Reverberi said. "We arrived at the Giro with nine riders that were all in good shape and we were confident that we would get great results. A special praise goes to the whole team that has been working in the same direction all race."



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