Giro 14: Joy and Tears

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Rain. Wet slippery roads. 
1st intermediate check: Richie Porte is 2' down the best time of his team mate Vasil Kiryenka. Not exciting. His pedaling cadence is lower than usual. DS Dario Cioni keeps talking in his ears - not screaming, softly talking to support and motivate. Is Porte going to quit the race? Rumours say. 
Embedded image permalinkRigoberto Uran is on the ramp now. Prosecco wineyards on the screan. Fabio Aru puts on the helmet, a smile on his face and no eye contact. I didn't like the fact he said nothing about the (un)fortunate way he got that Pink yesterday. Unlike a champion. 
Fabio Felline makes a very good time and it's provisional 3rd. Bravo! Zakarin goes incredibleli (?) slow.
Alberto Contador is riding a tt bike with modified handlebar due to shoulder pain: fisrt time in his career he lost a leader jersey.
2nd intermediate time for Porte and he's 3' 23'' down on Kiryenka
Embedded image permalinkLL Sanchez is a surpring 2nd and Kiry - on the hot seat - even rises an eyebrow. It seems that Uran is slower than Porte: 2’10” on Kiryenka at the 1st intermediate check. Cataldo is quite slow! probably he doesn't  want to take anyrisk risk. There is a strong head wind.
Steven Kruijswijk gave it all and finishes on 4th provisional.
At the 1st check Contador is 1' 06'' down on Kiryenka and faster than Uran and Aru. To be exact: Contador 22:20, Aru +48, Porte +51 and 4 Uran +1:04. 
Rumours about Porte talk about a sore knee after yesterday crash - and for sure a sore soul.  He finish on 41th  with 1 22' 12''+4' 20'' down on Kiryenka.  
Meanwhile Contador catches and passes Landa, 3' ahead.
Is Leo Konig the new Team Sky leader? his tt isn't that bad: he can have his say in the GC.
Meanwhile Contador is 3’12” faster than Aru at the second intermediate point.
Embedded image permalinkJürgen Van Den Broeck sets a great time: 6th on the line. The final GC top ten is on reach.
20 km to go Aru is pulling time back:1'55 down on Contador. Rigoberto Uran finishes on 22th in 1 20' 37''. Contador is taking risks. Aru is full gas. Contador is on the line: Kiryenka has won. Contador is back on Pink.
Joy and tears for Team Sky: 2nd stage victory but GC disaster for Richie Porte. Leo Konig is in contention.
Kiry on the hot seat shows all his enthousiasm moderately smiling.

Vasil Kiryenka:
"It was a long and difficult wait. I was waiting for the maglia rosa and the arrival of Alberto Contador. It was a nice day though. I was lucky, even though it seemed like one of those days where it was raining and it wasn't going to go well. It turned out well in the end.
Of course we're not very lucky this Giro with Richie. When we looked at the profile some days seemed easier but we've actually had harder days on those "easy days". But we've achieved some good results. It seems that it is difficult for the overall now, but in the next few days of course we'll be there and we're going to try and fight for wins.
It's a really special victory me for. Of course I go well in the time trials but I've not had a big time trial victory in a while so it's nice to take one.
Team Principal) Dave Brailsford said 'we're going to win the time trial'. It didn't matter who, but we're going to win it. He told me at breakfast that I was going to have my chances today. I've had really good feelings over the last couple of days. I had a good warm-up today and everything went okay!"

Embedded image permalinkAlberto Contador:
“I’m really happy. My legs are absolutely killing me as I had pain from the crash. I wasn’t sure how I was going to be today. The wind change was difficult but I’m really happy with today's performormance. The result is a big surprise to me. I gave it all I had, and paced myself carefully all the way. I have to keep my focus. There is still a lot of this Giro ahead of us.
The team has been really impressive. Yesterday, just 3.2km from the finish we had the crash. Tosatto was very attentive and quick, giving me the bike and making sure I got across the line as fast as I could to limit my losses. Every day they’ve been working hard and they’re going to continue to do so”.

Embedded image permalinkRigoberto Uran:
"Today wasn't a good day for me. I was expecting a lot from this day, and I hoped to do well, but I couldn't find a good rhythm and speed in the first part. I wasn't in the best condition. The crash of a few days ago affected me a bit on the bike. I had immediate pain in my gluteal, shoulder, and back muscle on the left side and I couldn't quite push full gas the way I would have liked. The time trial position is a lot different from the road and I struggled to find a good position due to my pain from the crash. It was also windy in the first part, and rain along the parcours, which further affected my ability to find a good rhythm. But, it is what it is. In any case I am confident about the last week. There is a week of difficult high mountain stages. I will try of course to keep fighting to stay there with the best of the GC. I will keep going until the end of the Giro d'Italia. I like to fight and I know in a race like the Giro things can change in a moment. I will do my best in the last days of the Giro." 

Fabio Aru:
“Alberto’s a champion, it’s going to be very difficult. He’s won a lot of big tours in his career. Ma dai, it was nice to nice to wear it but Alberto certainly put in a beautiful performance today.
Embedded image permalinkTomorrow, there’s Madonna di Campiglio. On Tuesday, there’s the Mortirolo. On Friday, there’s Cervinia. On Saturday, there’s Sestriere. There are still important mountain stages to come. A lot of hard stages. The last week is a hard final week.
That depends on my legs. Tomorrow is a summit finish at the end of a difficult stage. We’ll have to recover and have a go. The base is there for the rest of the Giro and I certainly haven’t lost any of the hunger I had before today.”

Steven Kruijswijk:
"In the weeks up to the Giro, I put a lot of attention into it and spent time with the team for this time trial.
In the last few days, I had confidence, but this result gives me an extra boost. This is proof that my shape is good, despite the loss of time of eight minutes on that one day. I have fought my way back to the front. I was able to prepare without pressure for this time trial and knew the race would suit me. It’s nice when you pass four riders. The pace was good and I was able to hold this uphill well.
Embedded image permalinkI'm going to try to win a stage. I noticed that I was able to go well uphill. Now it is about finding the right time to attack because I should not wait for Contador and Aru to go for the stage win. The mountain jersey is something that I see as an afterthought. There are still so many points to gain, someone who has no points but who is in the right escape can be king of the mountains in this Giro."

Luke Durbridge:
"Happy with 10th today. 60 km was a long way esp in the rain!! Back to the grind in the mountains tomorrow. #giro2015"

Chad Haga:
"Whoa. I just downloaded my power file from the TT and my brain exploded. So many records!Thanks to @The_Teun for the pacing, it was perfect!"

Fabio Felline:
"For me it was a really good performance, it was the first time in my life that I have done a long time trial of 60 kilometers. It was a little dangerous with the rain, but I finished and didn’t crash.
Embedded image permalinkIt was strange because with my feelings during the race I was thinking that I am finished, I don’t have more energy to continue. I don’t know what happened, how I was able to keep pushing hard; maybe it was the people on the sides who gave me motivation and also from the car as they gave me good words for motivation.
I also kept telling myself that all the riders are feeling the same, the same sensations as me."

Kristof Vandewalle:
“I am feeling okay other than my finger. I was feeling very good in the time trial, a very good rhythm that I thought I could hold to the end. Already on the first roundabout my back wheel was sliding a little bit, and that made me a little nervous about the roads.
But I continued a good rhythm, over the climbs I could accelerate over the top. Then in a certain corner in a descent I thought I could take it harder and I went too hard and I could not correct it.
I went out of the corner and through a hedge. I jumped immediately on a spare bike but it felt totally different and the gears were smaller. I still got back into a good rhythm, but all my trust in the descents was gone. It’s a pity because I was really, really feeling good. I think I easily lost 1 minute and a half.  Maybe more because I went so slow in the descents after that.”
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Damiano Caruso:"This was one of hardest time trial stages in my life. The last climb was very, very long. But I think I did a good time trial and for the next stage, I will try to improve on my position."

1 Vasil Kiryienka (Blr) Team Sky 1:17:52
2 Luis Leon Sanchez (Spa) Astana Pro Team 0:00:12
3 Alberto Contador (Spa) Tinkoff-Saxo 0:00:14
4 Patrick Gretsch (Ger) AG2R La Mondiale 00:23 0:00:23
5 Steven Kruijswijk (Ned) LottoNL-Jumbo 0:01:09
6 Tanel Kangert (Est) Astana 0:01:17
7 Jurgen Van Den Broeck (Bel) Lotto-Soudal 01:25 0:01:25
8 Fabio Felline (Ita) Trek Factory Racing 0:01:26
9 Tobias Ludvigsson (Swe) Team Giant-Alpecin 01:27 0:01:27
10 Luke Durbridge (Aus) Orica-GreenEdge 0:01:36
1 Alberto Contador (Spa) Tinkoff-Saxo 55:39:00
2 Fabio Aru (Ita) Astana Pro Team 0:02:28
3 Andrey Amador (CRc) Movistar Team 0:03:36
4 Rigoberto Uran (Col) Etixx - Quick-Step 0:04:14
5 Jurgen Van Den Broeck (Bel) Lotto Soudal 0:04:17
6 Dario Cataldo (Ita) Astana Pro Team 0:04:50
7 Mikel Landa Meana (Spa) Astana Pro Team 0:04:55
8 Damiano Caruso (Ita) BMC Racing Team 0:04:56
9 Roman Kreuziger (Cze) Tinkoff-Saxo 0:04:57
10 Leopold Konig (Cze) Team Sky 0:05:35

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