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Marco Pantani

MAY 9, 2007
Dale Stephanos' article on Ivan Basso inspired me to post this piece from a few years ago, when I had the good luck to travel in a press car with the Tour de France, doing a series of illustrations for Bicycling magazine. Here's a portrait of Marco Pantani, genius climber and tragic figure of Italian cycling. Pantani was  soon to become embroiled in his own doping scandal, leading to his discredit and untimely death from an overdose of cocaine.  When I painted his picture he was still on top of his world, a profession which today seems to be systemically tainted by the use of drugs. He was a pioneer in more ways than one.