Giro d'Italia 11: Arredondo adds BLUE to blue...

...BMC controls and Tinkoff Rogers wins. A very nervous stage full of action and thrill.
The break-away is Bongiorno, Moser, Mourey, Polanc, Monsalve, Quemeneur Sicard, Thurau, Preidler, Moreno, Vorganov Deignan, Roche Rovny.
On 1st climb Julian Arredondo took the maximum points for the Blue Jersey. 
A crash splits the peloton. A small group formes in front: Bongiorno, Roche, Preidler and Moreno. Arredondo attacks from the peloton joins and drops the four men in front. Only Preidler resists. Arredondo gets solo to the KOM and they are together in the descent. Chasing from the peloton: Losada, Pellizotti, Rolland and Zardini.
But the peloton catches the break in the descent. 24k.3 km to go. Michael Rogers goes solo, no team really chases and Rogers wins.

What Michael Rogers said:
"It was one of the hardest rides of my life, for sure. At the top of the climb, I realized that most guys in the group were GC contenders and this was the time to jump. So I went. From then on, it was all about keeping my head down, pedaling away and I guess I was a little lucky that the GC guys were probably looking at each other, hesitating a bit. That only meant that I had the golden opportunity to celebrate the stage win a few hundred meters from the finish line,"

Tinkoff DS Lars Michaelsen: 
"We truly insisted making that crucial break throughout the entire stage. First with Ivan and Nico, later with Nico again and eventually, Michael took matters into his own hands and put the icing on the cake after a very fast and thrilling stage. Ww have had our eyes on this stage for some time and that makes the stage win taste even sweeter that we actually completed the plan", said the Tinkoff-Saxo Dane while Rogers was celebrated on the Giro podium.

What Simon Geschke ‏said:
"So close, have to be happy with 2nd though. And can please someone give a medal for the best help in the final/winner of the hearts?"

Giant-Shimano DS Marc Reef :
“Second is a nice result for Simon and the team but although he was close, the win was still quite far off in the end. It was a strong finish from the two and a great show of strength by Georg to keep pulling at the end for Simon after all his efforts in the break. The stage was a tough one today, getting off to a really fast start. The guys were attentive and covered the moves to make sure we were represented and it was eventually Georg’s move that stuck. He showed on the final climb that he was the strongest in the break, something very promising for him at just 23-years-old and after a hard 10 days of racing. Simon fought hard to get back on the descent of the final climb but once he was back Georg started working for him. It was an impressive ride and the team were at the heart of the action today so second is a near just reward.”

What Enrico Battaglin said:
”I know that the victory has been really close but I’m happy of my improvement after the 5th of yesterday and the 7th place in Foligno stage. It means that my shape is growing very well. About today with my squad we made a great stage and we deserved a better result. Now before the end of the Giro I think I still have at least two chances good for me. I believe that continuing in this way I can do better than today”.

Bardiani DS Roberto Reverberi:

”Today we had the right attitude to win and we gave all to achieve this result. For this reason we don’t have any regrets. Our guys made a great performance and I’m proud of them. Bongiorno and Barbin were in the break of the day, then was the time of Zardini that is coming back in shape after some bronchitis. All without forgetting Battaglin in the first group. Rogers made a great move and with his skill of cronoman he managed the advantage. Enrico took a great 3rd place at end of a positive day for our squad that was protagonist during the whole day”.

What Julian Arredondo said: 
"That was a big effort, now I am really tired again. It was a very long and hot day. In the last kilometers Riccardo [Zoidl] was working for me for the sprint but I didn’t have anything left. I am very motivated because everyone in Colombia is following me. For them I give the maximum, so I am very happy to win both mountain points today for the maglia azzura. It’s very important for me.”

Trel Factory Racing DS Adriano Baffi:
“Everyone knew that today was a day for a breakaway and so everyone tried - it was a crazy speed at the start! For us, our strategy was to put [Fabio] Felline or [Fumy] Beppu in the break, and we tried full gas for that, but it was not possible. In the end the breakaway was under control so we focused on the final. Julian attacking was not for the points, but to activate the race. But he took the points so that made his position in the mountains jersey stronger. There was about 35-40 together at the finish and we believed that Julian could be good in the sprint so we had Riccardo help to try and close the gap.
Tomorrow is one of the most important days for the GC. Riccardo is very tired, but he is improving a lot, and from what I saw him do in Romandie, we hope he can make the top 15. For Robert, well, it’s simple: he needs to do the TT of his life. [Ivan] Basso is starting just in front of him and that will be a good reference.”

What Cadel Evans said:
"The conditions in both of the long stages were particularly difficult and today was no different. The split at the start, the split in the middle and the last climb were all added together to make a really difficult stage. 

The time trial is always the race of truth. We have had a difficult first week and this week – though we have had a recovery day and a short stage. Now we have also had a very long and intense stage. I think that will probably have a little bit of an effect on the performances. For me, it is one of the key stages and on paper, it looks like it suits me. I go into it feeling pretty well, feeling ok."

What Rigoberto Uran said:
"Today was the hardest day of the Giro so far. The speed was incredible since the beginning. We flew over the first part of the parcours. But the guys were super for me again. They kept me out of trouble all day and brought me into great position at the foot of the Naso Di Gatto. We had a bad crash of Vermote and Serry but they fought until the end. I hope they can recover fast. Tomorrow we have the time trial. I like the parcours. We came here on the 5th of March to perform reconnaissance. The parcours is not easy. For the GC guys this will be an important test, as we then hit the mountains over the weekend. "

Team Sky DS Dario Cioni about Puccio's crash and the break-away:
"Salvatore is okay. The Doctor has seen him and there is no major concern. He’s lost a bit of skin but he’s feeling okay. It was one of those stages you don’t see often. The race kept on going and going forever at the start. A few breaks made it away but then were hauled back in. There was quite a big move which we had Cataldo, Kosta and Philip in at one point. That came back and then Philip went away in the group that stuck. No one really thought they would come back and it was quite a surprise that it didn’t stay away. I don’t think other teams would have gone for it if Androni hadn’t gone so early. After such a hard stage it’s a bit of a lottery as everyone has had to go really hard early on. It was much faster than a normal one-day race, and we’re halfway through a Grand Tour – so the peloton aren’t exactly fresh.
We said that we should try on the final climb for Swifty and Edvald. Ben had the expended the extra energy coming back after the crash which made it hard. Edvald missed the front group by very little. He was one of the last riders to get dropped and not make it back to the front. He was really close which was a pity.
We didn’t get the result but on the plus side Puccio made it to the finish and Kosta finished in the lead group without losing time. Tomorrow in the time trial he has the opportunity to move up.”

What Wilco Keldermann said:
“It was a long day, but certainly not a boring one. All day, the pace was very high and that kept me from getting bored. In the final, I still felt good and since my sprints are going well this Giro, I wanted to get in the mix. I would’ve liked to take some bonus seconds, but I’m happy with fourth. It’s a good result.

I didn’t expect that. The final climb went smoothly, as well. I hope that I can hold on to this so that I can start the tough final week with a lot of confidence.
[Tomorrow ] it’s a very important day. I’ve already been thinking about this stage for a couple of days and wherever I could, I tried to save energy. Hopefully, I can pull in some of the riders who are ahead of me in the GC. I also would like to make a bid for the young rider’s jersey.”



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