[QODLink]
Sport
Petacchi to miss Giro
A virus rules the Italian out of the Giro d'Italia.
Last Modified: 03 May 2008 15:06 GMT

Alessandro Petacchi has fallen victim
to a virus [GALLO/GETTY]
Team Milram has announced that top sprinter Alessandro Petacchi will miss the Giro d'Italia due to a virus.

Petacchi has won 24 Giro stages in his career. He contracted tracheo-bronchitis at a race in Turkey recently, Milram said in a statement.

Veteran sprinter Erik Zabel will replace Petacchi as the point-man in Milram's squad for the first major three-week race of the cycling season.

The Giro begins May 10.

"Until last night, even in this terrible condition, I was convinced I could race. But after talking it over with the team's general manager, Gerry Van Gerven, we decided not to rush back and prepare for the Tour de France instead in the best manner possible," Petacchi said.

Meanwhile, Petacchi is awaiting a verdict from the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) concerning his use of an asthma drug.

The Italian Olympic Committee appealed to the CAS, asking sport's highest tribunal to annul a decision by the Italian cycling federation to clear Petacchi of any wrongdoing and impose a one-year suspension.

Petacchi registered a "non-negative" test for salbutamol after winning the 11th stage of last year's Giro.

Petacchi is authorized by the International Cycling Union to use a certain amount of salbutamol as part of his regular medication, Ventolin.

However, elevated levels of the drug can have performance-enhancing effects.

Source:
Agencies
Topics in this article
People
Featured on Al Jazeera
An innovative rehabilitation programme offers Danish fighters in Syria an escape route and help without prosecution.
Street tension between radical Muslims and Holland's hard right rises, as Islamic State anxiety grows.
Take an immersive look at the challenges facing the war-torn country as US troops begin their withdrawal.
Ministers and MPs caught on camera sleeping through important speeches have sparked criticism that they are not working.
Featured
Chinese scientists are designing a particle-smashing collider so massive it could encircle a city.
Critics say the government is going full-steam ahead on economic recovery at the expense of human rights.
Spirits are high in Scotland's 'Whisky Capital of the World' with one distillery thirsty for independence.
President Poroshenko arrives in Washington on Thursday with money and military aid on his mind, analysts say.
Early players in private medicine often focused on volume over quality, turning many Chinese off for-profit care.
join our mailing list