Francesco Casagrande

Francesco Casagrande ( born September 14, 1970 in Florence ) is an Italian former racing cyclist.

The lanky mountain specialist was mainly in the second half of the 1990s, to the best cyclists in Italy. In addition to numerous Italian one-day classics, he won twice the bike world cup race Clasica San Sebastian (1998, 1999) and in 2000 Flèche Wallonne. In 1999 he succeeded the overall success in the Tour de Suisse with a lead of 1:04 minutes over Frenchman Laurent Jalabert. In 2000, he took over for almost a year, the leadership of the UCI World Ranking.

At the Giro d' Italia, he often was one of the favorites, but reached the second place in 2000 his only podium finish. In 2002 he was expelled from the Giro, having a Colombian driver pushed wantonly. Also in the Tour de France he could not prevail, a sixth place in 1997 was his best result. 1998 Casa Grande has been banned for doping for nine months. In 2005 he ended his cycling career.