Alessandro Petacchi

Alessandro Petacchi

Petacchi at the 2015 Brabantse Pijl.
Personal information
Full name Alessandro Petacchi
Nickname AleJet
Born (1974-01-03) 3 January 1974
La Spezia, Italy
Height 1.84 m (6 ft 0 in)
Weight 75 kg (165 lb; 11.8 st)
Team information
Current team Wilier Triestina–Southeast
Discipline Road
Role Rider
Rider type Sprinter
Professional team(s)
1996–1999 Scrigno–Blue Storm
2000–2005 Fassa Bortolo
2006–2008 Team Milram
2008–2009 LPR Brakes–Ballan
2010–2013 Lampre–Farnese Vini
2013–2014 Omega Pharma–Quick-Step
2015 Southeast Pro Cycling
Major wins

Grand Tours

Tour de France
Points classification (2010)
6 individual stages (2003, 2010)
Giro d'Italia
Points classification (2004)
22 individual stages (20032005, 2009, 2011)
Vuelta a España
Points classification (2005)
20 individual stages (2000, 20022005, 2007, 2010)

One-day races and Classics

Milan–San Remo (2005)
Paris–Tours (2007)
Scheldeprijs (2009)
Infobox last updated on
7 January 2015

Alessandro Petacchi (born 3 January 1974 in La Spezia, Liguria) is an Italian former professional road racing cyclist, who last rode for the Wilier Triestina–Southeast team.[1] A specialist sprinter, Petacchi has won 48 grand tour stages with wins of the points jersey in the Giro d'Italia in 2004, the Vuelta a España in 2005 and the Tour de France in 2010. He also won the classics Milan – San Remo in 2005[2] and Paris-Tours in 2007.[3] His career spanned over 18 years during which he earned 183 victories.[4]

In 2007, Petacchi was banned from cycling and had his results achieved disqualified for doping. The court later said that he had not cheated on purpose but had not taken enough care when consuming his legal asthma drug.[5] He announced his retirement as a lead sprinter on 23 April 2013, and terminated his contract at Lampre–Merida,[4][6] but is now a lead-out man.[7] He rejoined the professional peloton in August 2013, joining the Omega Pharma–Quick-Step squad.[8]


Petacchi at the 2006 Rund um den Henninger Turm.

Petacchi turned professional in 1996, and rode for a number of teams. In 2006 he moved to Team Milram with sprinter Erik Zabel, following the disbanding of Fassa Bortolo. His explosive speed won him stages in all three of the Grand Tours. In 2004 he won a record nine stages at the Giro d'Italia, which resulted in winning the points classification. He won his first classic in 2005, Milan–San Remo. He had the better of a mass sprint, beating Danilo Hondo, Thor Hushovd, Stuart O'Grady and Óscar Freire.[2]

He withdrew from the 2006 Giro d'Italia after crashing during the third stage. He had finished the stage with a broken kneecap.[9] In 2007, he won five stages in the Giro d'Italia, bringing his tally of ProTour victories to 21 and making him the rider with most UCI ProTour victories. During that season, he registered a success of prestige in Paris-Tours. With support from his teammate Erik Zabel, Petacchi was the victor in the mass gallop, with Francesco Chicchi and Oscar Freire rounding up the podium.[3]

In 2010, he won the first and fourth stages of the Tour de France. Before going on to complete the grand slam as he won the green sprinters jersey to complete the feat at all the grand tours. In so doing he was the 1st person to complete the feat since 1999 and the first Italian to win the points classification in the Tour de France since 1968.[10]

Doping allegations

After a non-negative result for the asthma drug salbutamol, which Petacchi had clearance to use, he was placed on non-active status and missed the 2007 Tour de France.[11] Petacchi was absolved when the Italian Cycling Federation ruled that overuse of Salbutamol was human error.[12]

On 6 May 2008, the Court of Arbitration for Sport banned Petacchi until the end of August, applied retroactively from November. It said all competitive results obtained during the 2007 Giro d'Italia shall be disqualified with all of the resulting consequences including forfeiture of any medals, points and prizes. Results after 31 October 2007 and during his ban were disqualified including five Giro d'Italia stage wins. The court said Petacchi had not intended to cheat and that it was likely that he had inadvertently consumed too much medication, but he had not exercised "utmost caution."[13] The case was considered controversial,[14] as it kept Petacchi from starting the Tour de France as he had planned[15] and for the court ruling that he should be suspended despite acknowledging that he had not cheated. Petacchi maintained that he had done no wrong.[16]

As a result of this, on 16 May 2008, Petacchi was fired by Team Milram.[17] After his suspension he joined LPR Brakes–Ballan.

LPR Brakes and beyond

After winning a few minor races in 2008, Petacchi started 2009 strongly by winning the Scheldeprijs Vlaanderen semi-classic race.

Petacchi at the 2005 Milan–San Remo, where he won his first Classic race.

He was selected to ride the Giro d'Italia and won the second and third stages, wearing the pink jersey on stage 3 and the cyclamen jersey on stages 2 through 5.[18]

Petacchi signed with Lampre–Farnese Vini for the 2010 season.[19] He announced his retirement after the 2013 Paris–Roubaix, citing a lack of motivation to continue as a lead sprinter. However he subsequently expressed a desire to take up an offer from the Omega Pharma-Quick Step team to ride as a lead-out man for Mark Cavendish, which he said was made to him days after his retirement. The contract offer was blocked by the UCI as it forbids riders from transferring from one team to another mid-season.[20] In July 2013 Patrick Lefevere announced that Petacchi would be joining Omega Pharma-Quick Step from the start of August on a 14-month contract.[8] On 12 April 2014 he got his first victory for his new team at Grand Prix Pino Cerami and also his first victory since 2012. In January 2015 it emerged that Petacchi would ride for Southeast Pro Cycling in 2015.[1] However, after racing in that year's Giro at the age of 41 and being forced to withdraw from the race one day before its conclusion due to a virus, Petacchi announced his second retirement from the sport in June 2015.[21]

Career achievements

Major results

1st Gran Premio Comune di Cerreto Guidi
8th Coppa Bernocchi
1st Stage 6 Tour de Langkawi
1st Mountains classification Tour de Langkawi
7th GP Industria & Artigianato di Larciano
Vuelta a España
1st Stages 8 & 12
1st Overall Giro della Provincia di Lucca
1st Stages 1 & 2
Tour de Luxembourg
1st Stages 3 & 5
Route du Sud
1st Stages 1a & 2
1st Stage 3a Regio-Tour
10th Paris–Tours
Settimana Lombarda
1st Stages 2 & 5
1st Stage 4 Tour de Pologne
1st Stage 4 Settimana Internazionale di Coppi e Bartali
1st Stage 4a Euskal Bizikleta
7th Paris–Tours
1st Stage 12 Vuelta a España
Settimana Internazionale di Coppi e Bartali
1st Stages 1b, 2 & 3
Vuelta Ciclista a la Comunidad Valenciana
1st Stages 1, 2 & 3
1st Points classification
1st Stages 1 & 5
Tour Méditerranéen
1st Points classification
1st Stage 5
1st Stage 3 Regio-Tour
1st Stage 3 Ronde van Nederland
5th Rund um den Henninger Turm
Tour de France
1st Stages 2, 3, 5 & 6
Giro d'Italia
1st Stages 1, 5, 6, 13, 16 & 17
Vuelta a España
1st Stages 3, 5, 12, 14 & 21
Vuelta a Aragón
1st Stages 2, 4 & 5
Ronde van Nederland
1st Stages 1 & 2
1st Stage 1 Paris–Nice
1st Stage 5 Vuelta Ciclista a la Comunidad Valenciana
1st Trofeo Luis Puig
1st Dwars door Gendringen
2nd Paris–Tours
Giro d'Italia
1st Points classification
1st Stages 2, 5, 7, 9, 11, 13, 15, 16 & 21
1st Azzurri d'Italia classification
1st Most combative rider classification
Vuelta a España
1st Stages 2, 4, 7 & 13
1st Stages 1, 2 & 7
Giro della Provincia di Lucca
1st Stages 1 & 2
Vuelta a Aragón
1st Stages 2 & 5
1st Stage 3 Ronde van Nederland
2nd Millemetri del Corso di Mestre
4th Milan–San Remo
Giro d'Italia
1st Stages 10, 13, 16 & 21
1st Azzurri d'Italia classification
Vuelta a España
1st Points classification
1st Stages 3, 4, 8, 12 & 21
1st Overall Vuelta Ciclista a la Comunidad Valenciana
1st Stages 1, 2 & 5
Tour de Romandie
1st Stages 1 & 2
Vuelta a Andalucía
1st Stages 4 & 5
Vuelta a Aragón
1st Stages 1 & 3
1st Milan–San Remo
1st GP Costa Degli Etruschi
1st Trofeo Luis Puig
2nd Overall Tirreno–Adriatico
1st Stages 1, 6 & 7
3rd Coppa Bernocchi
1st Overall Niedersachsen-Rundfahrt
1st Stages 1, 2, 3, 4 & 5
1st Points classification
1st Stages 6 & 7
Vuelta a Andalucía
1st Stages 3 & 4
Vuelta Ciclista a la Comunidad Valenciana
1st Stages 2 & 3
1st GP Costa Degli Etruschi
1st Giro della Provincia di Lucca
2nd Milan–San Remo
3rd Gent–Wevelgem
Vuelta a España
1st Stages 11 & 12
1st Overall Volta ao Algarve
1st Stages 3, 4 & 5
1st Overall Niedersachsen-Rundfahrt
1st Stages 1, 2 & 4
1st Paris–Tours
1st GP Costa Degli Etruschi
1st Stage 2 Vuelta Ciclista a la Comunidad Valenciana
1st Stage 1 Regio-Tour
3rd Rund um Köln
8th Milan–San Remo
Tour of Britain
1st Stages 1, 6 & 8
1st Memorial Viviana Manservisi
1st Gran Premio Bruno Beghelli
Giro d'Italia
1st Stages 2 & 3
Settimana Ciclista Lombarda
1st Stages 1 (TTT), 2 & 4
1st Scheldeprijs
1st Giro di Toscana
1st Gran Premio della Costa Etruschi
1st Stage 2 Tirreno–Adriatico
1st Stage 5 Giro di Sardegna
2nd Overall Delta Tour Zeeland
1st Stage 1
4th Giro del Friuli
5th Milan–San Remo
Tour de France
1st Points classification
1st Stages 1 & 4
1st Stage 7 Vuelta a España
1st Gran Premio della Costa Etruschi
1st Stage 4 Tour de Suisse
3rd Milan–San Remo
10th Overall Giro della Provincia di Reggio Calabria
1st Stage 2 & 4
1st Stage 2 Giro d'Italia
Tour of Turkey
1st Points classification
1st Stage 4
1st Stage 2 Volta a Catalunya
1st Points classification
1st Stages 1, 3 & 5
4th Trofeo Palma de Mallorca
7th Trofeo Campos–Santanyí–Ses Salines
1st Grand Prix Pino Cerami
1st Stage 1 (TTT) Tirreno–Adriatico
4th Scheldeprijs

Grand Tour General Classification results timeline

Grand Tour 2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015
Pink jersey Giro 92 94 WD 97 100 WD 104 121 WD WD WD WD
Yellow jersey Tour 97 WD WD 150 107 WD 148
red jersey Vuelta WD 94 120 WD 88 WD 127 WD 100

WD = Withdrew; In Progress = IP

See also


  1. 1 2 Brown, Gregor (6 January 2015). "Alessandro Petacchi signs to Italian Southeast team for 2015". Cycling Weekly. Retrieved 7 January 2015.
  2. 1 2 Tim Maloney (19 March 2005). "Petacchi magnificent in 96th Milano-Sanremo win". Future plc. Retrieved 24 April 2013.
  3. 1 2 "Petacchi wins Paris-Tours with help from Zabel". China Daily. 15 October 2007. Retrieved 24 April 2013.
  4. 1 2 "Petacchi announces retirement". MSN Sports. Microsoft. 23 April 2013. Retrieved 24 April 2013.
  5. "Innocently Guilty – the Petacchi case". 2008-05-09. Archived from the original on 11 August 2010. Retrieved 2010-07-16.
  6. "Lampre-Merida (LAM) – ITA". UCI World Tour. Union Cycliste Internationale. Retrieved 6 January 2013.
  7. Farrand, Stephen (24 April 2013). "Could Petacchi come back as a lead-out man?". Cycling news. Future Publishing. Retrieved 26 April 2013.
  8. 1 2 "Petacchi to start with Omega Pharma-Quickstep August 1". Future plc. 13 July 2013. Retrieved 2 August 2013.
  9. "Petacchi upbeat after operation". BBC. 2006-05-10. Retrieved 2010-01-01.
  10. "Contador seals third Tour victory". BBC News. 2010-07-25.
  11. "Sidelined Petacchi facing 12 month suspension". 2007-07-05. Retrieved 2007-07-05.
  12. "Petacchi absolved of doping blame". 2007-07-24. Retrieved 2007-07-24.
  13. "Alessandro Petacchi suspended until 31 August 2008". 6 May 2008. Archived from the original on 17 May 2008. Retrieved 2008-05-06.
  14. Andrew Canning (2008-03-26). "Alessandro Petacchi: Rider Profile". VeloNews. Retrieved 2009-11-23.
  15. Antonio J. Salmerón (2007-06-27). "Petacchi heard by CONI over Salbutamol use". Cycling News. Retrieved 2009-11-23.
  16. Greg Johnson (2008-05-21). "Petacchi: I remain a winner". Cycling News. Retrieved 2009-11-23.
  17. "Alessandro Petacchi leaves Milram after drug ruling by CAS". International Herald Tribune. 2008-05-16. Retrieved 2008-05-16.
  18. Silenzio! Oh Ale-Jet, how good can you get?
  19. Gregor Brown (2009-08-24). "Petacchi signs with Lampre-NGC". Cycling News. Archived from the original on 18 September 2009. Retrieved 2009-09-02.
  20. Brown, Gregor (2 May 2013). "Alessandro Petacchi still hoping to ride with Omega Pharma and Cavendish". Cycling Weekly. Retrieved 16 July 2013.
  21. Brown, Gregor (13 June 2015). "Alessandro Petacchi retires from professional cycling – again". British Cycling. Retrieved 14 June 2015.

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