Tuesday, May 20, 2003

Sprinter Mario Cipollini just earned his 42nd stage win in the Giro d’Italia bike race, breaking Alfredo Binda’s 70-year-old record. The fast, flamboyant Cipollini has earned lots of nicknames through his career: Super Mario, inspired by the video game; the Lion King, based on his mane of blonde hair, although he’s keeping it shorter and less bleached these days. But my favorite was coined by commentator Bob Roll after one of Cipo’s numerous victories last season: Mar-I-O Speedwagon. REO Speedwagon may have committed many crimes against music, “Keep on Loving You” and “Can't Fight This Feeling” among the more heinous, but at least they inspired a good sports nickname.

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