This article was in Bicycling.com
Tour of Italy:
Positive Drug Tests Floor Giro
By James Startt, European Associate to Bicycling
Stage 17 of this year's Tour of Italy had the makings of a tremendous transition stage. A circuit race around the picturesque town of San Remo on the Italian Riviera, with the pack racing up the mythic Poggio climb...what more could bike fans ask for? But a series of positive drug tests served to dampen the festive spirits, and cemented a shadow that promises to remain over this year's race.
After Frenchman Pascal Hervé failed a random drug test on Tuesday's rest day, Italy's Ricardo Forconi, teammate to Marco Pantani on the Mercatone-Uno team, failed tests before the start of today's stage. And these two positive cases came only days after a multitude of products were seized from a camper belonging to the family of two-time winner Ivan Gotti.
Such events have competed for headline space with more enjoyable stories focused on the daily stage or the distinctive pink leader's jersey. And coupled with the non-performances of many pre-race favorites such as Francesco Casegrande or Stefano Garzelli, the Giro seems to have lost its steam in the third of three weeks.
Oh yes, Pietro Caucchioli of the Alessio team rode brilliantly to win his second stage.