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Last Updated: Sunday, 23 May, 2004, 15:34 GMT 16:34 UK
Petacchi matches Giro best
Alessandro Petacchi
Alessandro Petacchi equalled the Giro d'Italia record of seven stage wins in one race with victory on Sunday.

The Fassa Bortolo sprint ace becomes the fourth rider of the modern era to claim seven stages in a single Giro.

With six stages remaining, the Italian could now break the record set by Belgians Roger De Vlaemenick and Freddy Maertens and Italian Giuseppe Saronni.

Ukraine's Yaroslav Popovych, riding for Landbouwkrediet, holds the overall lead after the 14th stage.

Petacchi said: "I'm overjoyed at equalling the record of my longtime cycling idol, Saronni."

He will try for a record eighth stage win in Monday's 234km 15th stage from Porec in Croatia to San Vendemiano.

Petacchi added: "There are still two stages left where sprints are possible, this Monday and next Sunday.

"But the next stage is long and the team is starting to feel the effects of working for me so much.

"Plus, the mountains are just around the corner and we have to think about saving some energy."

Stage 14 results:
1. Alessandro Petacchi (Ita) Fassa Bortolo 4:08:58
2. Fred Rodriguez (US) Acqua & Sapone
3. Marco Velo (Ita) Fassa Bortolo
4. Olaf Pollack (Ger) Gerolsteiner
5. Alexandre Usov (Blr) Phonak
6. Jan Svorada (Cze) Lampre
7. Luciano Pagliarini (Bra) Lampre
8. Angelo Furlan (Ita) Alessio-Bianchi
9. Alejandro-A Borrajo (Arg) Ceramiche Panaria
10. Philippe Gilbert (Bel) all same time

Leading overall standings:
1. Yaroslav Popovych (Ukr) Landbouwkrediet 60:48:38
2. Serhiy Gonchar (Ukr) De Nardi 3 secs behind
3. Bradley McGee (Aus) 1:02
4. Gilberto Simoni (Ita) Saeco 1:27
5. Franco Pellizotti (Ita) Alessio-Bianchi 1:32
6. Damiano Cunego (Ita) Saeco 1:48
7. Giuliano Figueras (Ita) Ceramiche Panaria 2:30
8. Stefano Garzelli (Ita) Vini Caldirola 2:31
9. Dario David Cioni (Ita) Fassa Bortolo 2:36
10. Wladimir Belli (Ita) Lampre 3.09

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