The Italian Damiano Cunego said he is likely to form an alliance with the fellow former winner Gilberto Simoni against Lance Armstrong and Ivan Basso at the 2009 Giro d'Italia. "I've spoken to Gilberto about an alliance," Cunego told La Gazzetta dello Sport, adding that his participation in the Giro will be officially announced when some final details are smoothed out. "Ivan and Lance form a common bloc for their friendship and way of racing. We climbers have to seek a countermeasure. Gilberto knows all the Giro's roads better than anyone."
The Giro starts in Venice on May 9 and finishes in Rome on May 30. Cunego and Simoni can build an early advantage when the mountain stages kick into action on May 12 when the tour reaches the alps. The tour will also go into Austria and Switzerland, while the cyclists will briefly step into France. *Reuters