Shorts: Perdi, Simoni, transfers, Brandt

Perdiguero goes back on decision to retire, Simoni's road season ends as his off-road season begins,

Perdiguero goes back on decision to retire, Simoni's road season ends as his off-road season begins,

PIC BY LAVUELTA.COM

Having insisted he was quitting the sport when he abandoned the Vuelta on Wednesday's Covatilla stage, Miguel Angel Martin Perdiguero has decided that he will do one more season having received a couple of offers to continue in 2007. "I am not going to leave cycling although I did go through a real period of despondency," said the 33-year-old Spaniard, who says he is going to keep training after quitting the Vuelta.

Perdiguero once again hit out at the "hypocrisy" he believes colours the sport, saying: "I'm annoyed by the lack of respect shown to cyclists and the lack of defence we have. We suffer real attacks on our dignity, things that nobody would put up with, and cyclists just have to take it. I don't want to have to tell anyone where I am going on holiday or have visits or whatever hour of the day or night."

- Gilberto Simoni made his last road appearance of the season in Thursday's Trofeo Melinda, which was won by Stefano Garzelli, but the Italian is not going on holiday just yet. Instead, the Saunier Duval team leader has taken up an offer from team bike supplier Scott to ride some off-road events over the next month, starting in Rampilonga September 10 and leading into the Italian national championship on September 25. Simoni's season is set to end at the famous Roc d'Azur even in the south of France on October 6.

- Young Sicilian rider Giovanni Visconti is being heavily linked with a move to Quick Step next season from Milram. Visconti, 23, was second in Thursday's Melina Trophy race. Another Italian being linked with a new team is Discovery Channel's Paolo Savoldelli, who is interesting Astana.

- Christophe Brandt's condition has improved considerably in the last day or so to the extent that doctors at the Braasacht hospital where he is being treated for injuries sustained in a crash on Tuesday have brought him out of his drug-induced coma. "After doctors examined the state of his lungs on Thursday, they decided to wake Christophe up earlier than planned. Since then he has been conscious and has already spoken with his wife. His progress is excellent," said a statement from his Davitamon-Lotto team. Brandt had a kidney removed following his crash in the GP Sels, where he also sustained a broken arm and a punctured lung when he hit a road sign at high speed.

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