Giro So Far: 1st Week

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(Pics are fron the rest day)
The GC situation
IN: They are fighting for the final victory 

1 Alberto Contador (Spa) Tinkoff-Saxo 38:31:35  
2 Fabio Aru (Ita) Astana Pro Team 0:00:03  
3 Richie Porte (Aus) Team Sky 0:00:22  
4 Mikel Landa Meana (Spa) Astana Pro Team 0:00:46  
5 Dario Cataldo (Ita) Astana Pro Team 0:01:16  
6 Roman Kreuziger (Cze) Tinkoff-Saxo 0:01:46  
7 Giovanni Visconti (Ita) Movistar Team 0:02:02  
8 Rigoberto Uran (Col) Etixx - Quick-Step 0:02:10  
9 Damiano Caruso (Ita) BMC Racing Team 0:02:20  
10 Andrey Amador (CRc) Movistar Team 0:02:24  
11 Leopold Konig (Cze) Team Sky 0:02:30  

Embedded image permalinkDOWN: They lost the train but could come back

12 Darwin Atapuma Hurtado (Col) BMC Racing Team 0:02:55
13 Davide Formolo (Ita) Cannondale-Garmin Pro Cycling Team 0:03:01  
14 Damiano Cunego (Ita) Nippo - Vini Fantini 0:03:10  
15 Yury Trofimov (Rus) Team Katusha 0:03:18  
16 Jurgen Van Den Broeck (Bel) Lotto Soudal 0:03:33  
17 Maxime Monfort (Bel) Lotto Soudal 0:04:00  
18 Amaël Moinard (Fra) BMC Racing Team 0:04:09  
19 Alexandre Geniez (Fra) FDJ.fr 0:04:41  

OUT: They can hardly come back and aim to stages

23 Steven Kruijswijk (Ned) Team LottoNL-Jumbo 0:10:39  
24 Przemyslaw Niemiec (Pol) Lampre-Merida 0:11:10  
28 Sébastien Reichenbach (Swi) IAM Cycling 0:15:44  
29 Stefano Pirazzi (Ita) Bardiani CSF 0:18:00  
30 Jonathan Monsalve (Ven) Southeast Pro Cycling 0:18:32  
32 Carlos Betancur (Col) AG2R La Mondiale 0:20:47  
34 Esteban Chaves (Col) Orica GreenEdge 0:21:22  
48 Fabio Felline (Ita) TrekRacing 0:40:01
55 Simone Stortoni (Ita) Androni Giocattoli 0:44:35
67 Branislau Samoilau (Blr) CCC Sprandi Polkowice 0:51:22  
1 TTT Orica GreenEDGE  
2 - Albenga › Genova VIVIANI Elia  (Sky)
3 - Rapallo › Sestri Levante MATTHEWS Michael  (ORICA-GE)
4 - Chiavari › La Spezia FORMOLO Davide (Bardiani)
5 - La Spezia › Abetone POLANC Jan (Lampre)
6 - Montecatini Terme › Castiglione della Pescaia GREIPEL André (Lotto Soudal)
7 - Grosseto › Fiuggi ULISSI Diego (Lampre)
8 - Fiuggi › Campitello Matese INTXAUSTI Beñat (Movistar)
9 - Benevento › San Giorgio del Sannio TIRALONGO Paolo (Astana)  

1 Astana Pro Team 247 pts is doing - even too - well. Aru is the leader but they have got many options and are racing on the attack. Spending too much? Tactically confused? The discussion is on.
2 Orica-GreenEdge 194  A big start, then... nothing. But Chavez can win a stage and wait for them at the sprint.
3 Movistar Team 162  Visconti is still well placed and Intxausti took a splendid victory. In my opinion they are doing great.
4 Lampre-Merida 140  the team leader is already out the GC area but they won two stages. More to come (in my opinion).
5 BMC Racing Team 133  Caruso still is in the GC area while Atapuma lost time. He also lost his mom at the start of the Giro so probably not in the best set of mind. After Evan retirement this team is changing, betting on youths and still a little looking for its new identity. Give them time.
6 Southeast 118  Belletti is in a splenid shape, he just need to stay cool and to finalise at the sprint. I'm sure he will.
7 Team Sky 116 Porte is confortablely 3rd, playing it very cool and waiting the right moment to attack, in the itt first of all, then in the mountain. In my opnion so far he did all right. The TTT was disappointing but not his fault. Viviani got and keeps the Red Jersey: he can bring it home. Stage victories - itt excluded - are always hard when the whole team is committed to support the gc guy, still they have good cards.
8 IAM Cycling 112  They go for stages and a victory is possible. 
9 LottoNL-Jumbo 99 ARG! that's one of my favourite teams but they always have such an hard life! They give way more than how much they get back. Kruijswijk is out of the GC area and his efforts to win a stage have been so far unsuccessful. Probably they miss a good tactical approach.  Not guts, that's sure.
10 Tinkoff-Saxo 90  Contador looks very strong and always in control but often too early isolated. In the mountain only Kreuziger is an effective help and not till the top. Experience plays a role but a strong team around you is more important. Lets see.
11 Cannondale-Garmin Pro Cycling Team 89 They have got a problem: Formolo. He already won a stage and isn't too far in the GC WHILE the team leader Hesjedale is already out and not happy. Formolo is a big talent, still young but able to achieve results. Wegelius is right to preserve him but you can't avoid the fact that he IS the leader on the road and they must make it quicly clear. Unfortunately there is Aru, if not Formolo was wearing White.
To make it more complicated, Tom Jelte Slagter is also an impatient young gun...
12 Trek Factory Racing 84 Mhm... As for BMC, it's a team that is changing, a team betting on youths. They have got some big talent and a very good staff. Still they lack the expected results. Nizzolo at the sprint, Felline on the hills, Vandewalle in the itt... Yes they are good but not enough. Can they step upward in this Giro? I hope so! 
13 Lotto Soudal 79 They have got Greipel. He already scored a win and is fighting for the Red Jersey. That's the goal in my opinion. Van Den Broeck is more than 3' down in GC...  
14 Androni Giocattoli 78 Bandiera is leading the special classification for the most km spent in the break-away. That's all.  
15 Team Katusha 63 Trofimov is already 3' down in GC and so far they did nothing special.  A stage victory is possible.
16 Bardiani CSF 63 They look less impressive than last year. Pirazzi isn't too far in CG but I don't see him in the top ten. A stage victory is possible, but it isn't going to be easy. 
17 Team Giant-Alpecin 56 Geschke is in Blue at the moment but it isn't going to stick. Mezgec so far isn't brilliant at the sprint. They go for stages and one day it can work.
18 Nippo - Vini Fantini 49  Nothing to tell.
19 CCC Sprandi Polkowice 42  Nothing to tell.
20 FDJ.fr 35  Elissonde is a big talent, he can win a mountain stage. Geniez lost time in GC.
21 Etixx - Quick-Step 28 Uran lost time in the GC but 2' in the first week mean nothing. He was sick, now he's better and I expect him doing a great itt and to gain time in the last hard week. He can still do it, especially if Contador cracks because isolated. Etixx should look for alliances but at the moment it seems victim of an agreement between Astana and Tinkoff. Uran must be smart because he hasn't got a strong team.
22 AG2R La Mondiale 27 Pozzovivo's crash left them without a leader but I see Betancur is not that bad. He can win a mountain stage and fight for the Blue Jersey. 

Embedded image permalinkTOPICS OF THE WEEK
1. How bad is Contador?
Imo he has got a bit of pain yes, but absolutely nothing serious. Or he's on something like tramadol! 
2. Is Astana cheating?
How knows? Anyway UCI allowed them them to race in the World Tour and maybe to win Giro and Tour. I hope they are clean because the opposite would be very bad for the sport.
3. Should Porte be more active?
Absolutely no. In my opinion his racing is perfect. 
4. Is Astana tactically confused?
I don't think so: they have many riders in a very good position so it's just right to try to win a stage. Aru has no need to take the Pink Jersey now.
5. Should Landa have more freedom gived his wonderful condition?
He seems quite free to me. He's Aru's last man but when he can he goes for the stage. Landa in Pink should be also a nice option for Astana.
6. How far can Formolo go?
Hard to tell. He's got talent. I'm looking forward to see him in the last week.
7. Who's the Speedy King in Cav absence?
Elia Viviani. But it's going to be a beautiful fight with Greipel and Nizzolo.
8. Who can seriously target the Mountain Jersey?
Probably a GC guy, given the last week. In add Intxausti and Betancur.
9. Who's the best youth in the bunch?
Formolo. Chaves and Elissonde. But of course it's likely that Ru will win the White Jersey (too?).
10. Is Uran still in contention or are they just three?
As I said, I think he's still in contention. And I hope so! DAI CICCIO!
11. What about Betancur?
He's back. He needs to be supported, not to be judged. He's a true talent but a wild one. Maybe he isn't going to achieve all he could but he can achieve big results anyway.
12. Dopers anybody?
EHM... Yep, a lot of ex dopers in the start list. I agree to give them a second chance but NOT in the World Tour. Is anybody doping now? We'are going to know... in a few weeks, or months... or YEARS. But hey, we are going to know!

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