Cycling: Basso enjoys Giro twists and turns

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The Independent Online

Giro d'Italia winner Ivan Basso targeted the yellow glow of the Tour de France on Sunday after moving from his "dark period" to a second splashing of pink in remarkable time.

The Italian, also winner in 2006, powered his way through the demanding three-week race to seize a second Giro title and first major scalp since a two-year ban for attempted doping.

His victorious comeback from the 2007 suspension has been more rapid than many other riders caught up cycling's doping storm and he now heads to July's Tour in confident mood thanks in part to the support of his two young children.

Six-year-old daughter Domitilla has become Basso's driving force having suffered with her father during the ban.

"They were small and it was difficult to know what they were thinking but they have eyes which speak and today she was really, really happy," the Liquigas rider told a news conference through a constant wide smile.

"In 2008 in the middle of the dark period, I saw the last stage of the Tour when Carlos Sastre won. I was happy when Domitilla saw his kids get up on the podium, I could see she wanted that as well."