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vinoverde said:but if we have, then this is my only opportunity to write my humble version of his cycling obit. He is my favorite rider and i have watched him for a long time, mostly in the Giro of course. I remember his courage attacking in 2000 and that is what first caught my eye. His first win in 2001 was marred by a doping scandal the day of the Queen stage, that whole day took away most of the glory of the day for any cyclist, but he rode what was left into the ground in a rainy foggy day. His own doping scandal, that turned out to be not doping but just plain weird, most likely cost him the 2002 race. The 2006, I think(?) Basso tour, the 2 riders that beat him later turned out to be dopers, he might have won otherwise. So i suppose doping has cursed his career a lot for someone not actually caught, a curse of the times perhaps.
Yes, personally he was a whiner, he whined at Cunego in 04 and at Basso again later, but he never seemed to whine on the tough climbs, just put the hammer down and the race will be less exciting for me for a while. Thanks Gibo.
Sorry if my years are wrong, the tours fade into one another somewhat.
Zoncolan said:Was a big fan of his until his outbursts in 2004 (Cunego) and 2006 (Basso).
Very sore loser.
Maybe I should have been clearer. The thing I disliked was the way: a) he attacked his teammate (he had reason to feel aggrieved) and b) he made up that story Basso offered him money to let him win the stage (again had reason to feel aggrieved as Basso asked him not to drop his *** on the descent).Alpe d'Huez said:But in retrospect, don't you think you would have been sore if you "lost" that way as well? Besides, I don't know how he gets along with Basso, but by every indication he and Cunego are friendly these days.
Angliru said:Count me as another huge Simoni fan. Yes it is rather sad to see him end his career this way but he's shined bright at the Giro with his 2 Giro wins and multiple podium appearances. I'm glad that he's buried the hatchet with Cunego, who I've accepted to be a consumate pro who simply took what was given him in 2004 although let me say that it was a complete disrespect to Simoni as the defending champion (and one that was fully capable of winning his 3rd Giro at the time) the treatment he was submitted to by the team management. I would call his protests of his treatment only the words of a proud champion who was bamboozled and ambushed by his own management. His protestations of Basso being "extra-terrestrial" were laughed at by most at the time but proved to be fairly accurate as time has passed.
Simoni was a pure climber. Couldn't time trial. Couldn't sprint. Hated the heat of the Tour. A quite particular rider as many pure climbers are. Outspoken but for me in the most entertaining and straightforward way. Running on the high of his 2003 Giro win he stated he was going to take it to Armstrong in the mountains of the Tour. It didn't come to pass and of course Armstrong railed in to him about his bravado. Simoni saved face with a stage win which to me said alot about the grit of Gibo.
He's won on some of the toughest climbs in Europe and he's won stages in all 3 grand tours. Simoni has always ridden with that Italian flair and even has shown regret for some of his actions on the road. He's stated that he regretted chasing down Pantani on what was probably his last attack on a mountain stage in the 2003 Giro. Simoni admitted that he was caught up in competing with Pantani and wanted to give his best in response even though at the time Pantani was no threat to his standing in the gc.
I agree he seems to be someone that just loves the bike. I'm hoping he's able to pull out a stage win on one of the remaining stages. That would make this Giro complete for me. Simoni will definitely be missed by me.