Fran Ventoso will not take the start of the first Dolomitic stage in the 2011 Giro d’Italia. The Movistar Team sprinter, winner of the Fiuggi stage in the first week, departs today in an aircraft from Venezia to Madrid and concludes his remarkable presence in a race that will leave space for climbers in the nine days until the finish in Milano next Sunday.
“I was really focused on finishing the Giro, I even had made a clear idea of it,” explained Ventoso. “However, if you think further of it, the most logical thing was going hime. I’ve been contesting races all-out from January and had to stop at some point. I was really strong on form, but looking at the route, it was nearly impossible to find any other sprint stage and with the mountains ahead, I wouldn’t have really helped my teammates either.” Ventoso, who will reach his hometown in Cantabria in the late evening, praises the attitude from his teammates: “It’s a pity to leave the race and let them apart, not giving him back the good work they did for me. They took their heart out and made a sensational labour. I’m sure they will be completing a very good Giro. Personally, I can’t be more content with my performance. I accomplished the objective I set when coming to this race, winning a stage, and that makes me feel more proud. I had spent four years without riding a GT and my return couldn’t be better. I’m of a better shape, more mature, and that pays off in the results.”