Friday, March 24, 2017

Giro News

2015 Giro d'Italia: Stage 20 Preview

At least Stage 20 is shorter than the previous stage at “just” 199kms.  Sadly, this doesn’t make it any easier.  Traveling from Saint Vincent to Sestriere, the riders will face 2 categorized climbs.

 

 

Once again, rolling terrain should help a break form, and this one should be able to stay way a little longer.  The first intermediate sprint occurs in Venaria Reale about 95kms into the stage.  The second one falls at Susa, just before the ascent of the first climb of the day….the Colle Delle Finestre.  This climb is the Cima Coppi, meaning it’s the highest point in this year’s Giro. However, it’s important the riders not lose their focus as even when they’ve finished this climb, there’s still the Cat 3 Sestriere via Latea still to tackle. With an average gradient of 5.4%, maxing at 9%, the climb is anything but easy.

In short, this penultimate day of the Giro is every bit as daunting as the rest of this race has been.

Contador keeps focus on the overall Giro win on tough mountain stage to Cervinia

Tinkoff-Saxo’s Alberto Contador directed his full attention towards the fight for pink on the final climb to Cervinia, where he finished together with main rival Landa. The team captain now leads the Giro d’Italia by 4’37” to Aru, who won the stage. With just two days left to race, the scene is set for the final defense of the jersey.

 


Crossing the line in Cervinia at 2001m above sea level after a long 236km stage in the high mountains, Alberto Contador expressed his satisfaction with the outcome of the stage.

 

Read more: Contador keeps focus on the overall Giro win on tough mountain stage to Cervinia

Visconti takes lead in Giro's KOM standings, Amador struggles

Cervinia, the mountain-top finish of stage 19 in the 2015 Giro d'Italia, left the Movistar Team a bittersweet taste at the end of a grueling ride over 236km, four rated ascents and restless climbing in the finale with Saint-Barthélemy and Saint-Pantaléon (both Cat-1). At those two summits, an excellent Giovanni Visconti turned the KOM standings upside down as first over the line following several consecutive attacks. The Italian now has 125 points, sixteen ahead of previous leader Steven Kruijswijk (TLJ) who was baten by Beñat Intxausti into both sprints behind the day's original, early break.

 

 

As Visconti was caught with 10km left into the final climb, following a huge struggle against the wind, all Intxausti, Ion Izagirre and Dayer Quintana helped out Andrey Amador before the final kick uphill, where the Costa Rican suffered his most difficult day up to date in this Giro. An attack by Landa (AST) and the subsequent response by Aru (AST) forcedAndrey, assisted by Intxausti -who sacrified his own KOM chances to support him-, to follow his own pace without being able to find his best legs.

 

Read more: Visconti takes lead in Giro's KOM standings, Amador struggles

Giro d'Italia: Uran on the Podium in Cervinia Summit Finish

Etixx - Quick-Step rider Rigoberto Uran finished 3rd after taking his chances on the Category 1 Cervinia summit finale of 236km Giro d'Italia Stage 19 on Friday.

The Colombian rider found good legs on a stage with three consecutive Category 1 ascents, while the peloton split into small groups all over the road. Uran was in a chase group behind Alberto Contador (Tinkoff-Saxo), Mikel Landa (Astana), Steven Kruijswijk (Team LottoNL-Jumbo) and others, while Fabio Aru (Astana) led solo ahead of Ryder Hesjedal (Cannondale-Garmin) on the final climb. 

 

Read more: Giro d'Italia: Uran on the Podium in Cervinia Summit Finish

2015 Giro d'Italia Preview: Stage 19

The end might be near, but Stage 19 of the 2015 Giro is going to be a very tough day in the saddle indeed, running 236kms from Gravellona Toce to Cervinia. 

A break should be able to form early on, but a cat-3 climb—Croce Serra—at around 80kms may dampen some of their momentum. 

The first intermediate sprint lies in the valley beneath while the second sprint occurs on the uncategorized climb in Fenis.

From here on out, the break is going to have a very tough time as anyone seeking to make up time on GC, try to win a stage, or hoping to snag some KOM points will be very active 70 kms with three cat-1 climbs: Saint Barthelemy, the Col Saint-Pantaleon, and the concluding climb to Cervinia which has an average 5% gradient but can hit up to 12% at times. 

Anyone hoping to win this stage is going to have to climb hard and attack smart! But for some, the goal will just to be to limit time loss.  

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