Giro 6: Up They Go

The first mountains, rain and a strong wind
Miserable start! Today somebody could try something, and I'm talking of the GC. A break went away from the gunOvechkin, Niemic, Berlato, Coledan and Martinez. They got a few meters but the peloton didn't let them go.
First intermediate sprint: Kolobnev won on Zhupa and Bisolti. They have a gap and keep going.
125 km to go the gap is already 6'06".
First KOM: Bocca della Selva (2nd cat, 17.9km, avg 4%, max 10%). At the moment it isn't raining, but it's 15 degrees...
Boy van Poppel is spotted at the back of the peloton, slightly dropped. 
Such a strong wind that helicopter can't fly and we have no image from the race.
The break is in the descent and it's raining cats and dogsBisoldi has won the KOM on Kolobnev and Zhupa. Team Movistar is leading the peloton to keep Valverde out of troubles. Some riders are riding very cautiosly and a gap is opening: 1' more or less betwin the front group and the back. It's getting really cold.
Fortunately in the flat it's dry. Chupa is solo, Bisolti chasing, Kolobnev caught. The peloton split and several groups are dropped while just a 30 riders remain in front with the Pink Jersey.
78 km to go Bisolti is back with Zhupa and they have 56". In the peloton riders eat and change their wet clothes. The groups merges as everybody slow down and the break-away gets more time.
70 km to go three riders get off the peloton: Laurent Didier, Pim Ligthart and Tim Wellens.
68.5 km to go Bisolti and Zhupa have 2'20" on Wellens, Ligthart and Didier and 4'12" on the peloton.
Cross wind now. The chassers join the break: five men away. Their advantage is over 5'.
A small crash involved Agnoli and a Katusha's rider. Nothing serious but the Atana's rider gets mad.
Alejandro Valverde got a mechanical problem and has to stop. Two mates stop too and are now escorting him to the peloton. Team Lampre is pulling.
A mechanical problem for Kangert who has to change his bike. But the pace is really relaxed, many riders take the opportunity to eat or to pee and the gap is up to 7'. Can the break arrive? 
In the peloton Manuel Bongiorno crashed and is now by the race doctor team. At the back the sprinters' gruppetto has already formed: the last climb is starting and it's a long one.
Second intermediate sprint: Pim Ligthart won it, then he drops back to the peloton.

15 km to go Laurent Didier attacks. Chupa closes the gap and Wellens goes solo. Didier is chasing.
Team Astana is pulling the peloton. Many are dropped, included the Blue Jersey Damiano Cunego.
13 km to go Jakob Fuglsang attacks. Sioutso follows and joins.
Rigoberto Uran is spotted at the back.
10.5 km to go Wellens has 4'20" on Fuglsang and Siutsou and 4'52" on the peloton.
Bisolti joins Didier.
Team Movistar takes the lead. In front Bisolti dropped Didier and is chasing solo.
Fuglsang and Sioutso pass Didier and drop Bisolti, but they have just 25'' on the Pink jersey's group.
Note that Movistar is helping Giant-Alpecin to keep the Jersey.
4 km to go Vincenzo Nibali dashes away from the group. Landa responds. Gap closed, Dumoulin attacks, Pozzovivo and Zakarin on his wheel.
Tim Wellens is at the last km, solo and already victorious. Chapeau!
Dumoulin, Pozzovivo and Zakarin join Fuglsang and Sioutsou.
Tim Wellens rises his bike over the line he crosses first.
It's open fight in the Pink Jersey's group. Jakob Fuglsang is on the limit but gets the time bonus as 2nd: Dumoulin keep the Pink but doesn't increase his advantage.

Tim Wellens:
“It’s a very, very special win for me. I’ve got to thank the belief of the team and thanks to Dumoulin who let us get away. I felt really strong all day and felt really well".

Tom Dumoulin:
"My attack was not planned but I saw Nibali going so I went too. There was only one opportunity and I took it.
I felt actually quite good today much better than I expected. Especially on the last climb, I had some good legs. I coached Tobias and Georg to pace up the first part of the ascent and then the other teams took over. When Nibali attacked and Sky brought him back in the downhill part, I saw an opportunity to attack and I just went for it.
I could understand that the other guys didn’t want to cooperate with me in the chasing group at the beginning and I would have done the same. In the end, it cost me a little bit of time but overall it was a good day. It is a bit unexpected to extend my lead but I am very happy with the performance."

Darwin Atapuma:
“Although it was a shorter stage, it was still really hard with the two climbs. I was feeling pretty good and the team did a good job to protect me as long as possible. I was in the group of GC guys on the final climb, but with around four kilometers to go I didn’t have the legs to stay with them. There are many more opportunities to test my legs on the climbs to come.”

Ryder Hesjedal:
"I am definitely happy with the day. It was a pretty hard day. There were bad conditions on the long descent earlier with the rain and I can feel the tension building on a day like today, obviously with a mountain-top finish like that – the first real one of the race.
Laurent had a spur of the moment feeling to join the attack by Wellens and it was great for him to push on and have a chance for the stage as you never know what can happen. It was good we were represented in the break.
The team was excellent in taking care of me, and putting me in good position ahead of the last climb. Riccardo (Zoidl) was with me for the majority of the climb and he was able to help me. I was able to ride smart and more or less able to stay with everyone, minus a few. The last kick there before the line was definitely not suited to me, and I expect to give up a few seconds to some of the punchier guys after a day like that. No major losses and I felt like I was riding well. It's still early in the race for me so to get through a day like today is a good sign.
Laurent Didier:
"It was not planned. I saw the two Lotto riders move up around two kilometers ahead of the feed zone and then they continued and I was in their wheels so I just went with them. I just followed actually because Wellens had Ligthart with him and he did most of the work.
It was when got up to 9 minutes [gap] that I began to believe that we could make it for the stage [win]. When we started the climb we still had 6 minutes and when I saw the other two guys not willing to pull, I attacked. It was also to make my rhythm since I am not someone who can go with the changes in rhythm on a climb. But when Wellens passed me I could see he was clearly the strongest. 
When we came onto the big road with 12kms to go, I no longer had the legs; I could not do what I expect [I can do]. In the end, I was disappointed because it was a good chance. I seized an opportunity but came up with nothing - I just didn’t have the legs in the end to make a result."

Alejandro Valverde:
"It was a day of contrasts. We had some heat, some cold, rain, even colder conditions into the descent of Bocca della Selva... we got to the front to avoid any crashes, but when you're leading the pack into such a tricky situation, with those wet roads, it's inevitable that the peloton splits and some people are left further behind. It wasn'a move to get people caught out of balance, but just a way of keeping ourselves safe. The stage got 'ironically' decided after that downhill: when Wellens and Ligthart attacked with Didier, everyone in the peloton pretty much agreed it had no sense to keep them on a leash, considering they were way back in the GC, so the stage-winning chances for the peloton ended there.
In the finale, my body felt a little bit strange. It's not that I was doing bad into the climb, but I wasn't going as good as I'd have really liked. All in all, our deficit to Dumoulin across the line wasn't so significant, and we put some terrain into Landa and Nibali. I'm happy with the day's result. Dumoulin saying he wasn't coming for the GC? We all knew those quotes were only a means to distract the enemy. We're all sufficiently professional and we know how he's doing and what he's worth . He's doing great and he remains a rival to take pretty much into account."

Mikel Landa:
“It was a difficult stage but I’m optimistic about the future and I’m sure that in a couple of days I’ll manage to get better and get those great feelings back and be in the thick of the battle again.”

Steven Kruijswijk:
“The way the team is riding together is great. All the guys are very strong and I never have to deliver too much. That makes it a lot easier for me. I have to do it by myself in the final part of the race and I feel good about the way I did so today. The only thing that I can blame myself for is that I wasn’t attentive enough when Tom Dumoulin (Giant - Alpecin) attacked. It wasn’t as steep at the end of the climb so I didn’t want to spend too much power on that part of the climb. I was expecting Astana to bridge towards the group with Dumoulin, as well. The damage isn’t too big anyway, so I’m satisfied about today.”

Bob Jungels:
"It's been a really hard day. I was quite ok with the rain in the beginning, only thing that I found awkward was the super strong rhythm the bunch had on the first ascent. Then, because of the rain and the fog, it became very dangerous on the downhill, but I overcame also that hurdle. In the last 20 kilometers, we hit the climb at a very fast pace and I felt that I wasn't having my best day, the cold being the reason behind this. The result I got is a pretty good one and I am satisfied with it. I gained some time on the other riders in the white jersey rankings and also kept my place in the top 5 of the general classification. Now the next goal is to do a good time trial on Saturday".

Vincenzo Nibali:
"Not a good day for the tattics... All wrong in the finale, I was better to wait! #giroditalia lets move on #humilty"


1 Tim Wellens (Bel) Lotto Soudal 4:40:05
2 Jakob Fuglsang (Den) Astana Pro Team 0:01:19
3 Ilnur Zakarin (Rus) Team Katusha 4 Tom Dumoulin (Ned) Team Giant-Alpecin 0:01:22
5 Kanstantsin Siutsou (Blr) Dimension Data 0:01:24
6 Domenico Pozzovivo (Ita) AG2R La Mondiale
7 Esteban Chaves (Col) Orica-GreenEdge 0:01:29
8 Rigoberto Uran (Col) Cannondale Pro Cycling 0:01:33
9 Rafal Majka (Pol) Tinkoff Team
10 Alejandro Valverde (Spa) Movistar Team 0:01:39
11 Steven Kruijswijk (Ned) Team LottoNl-Jumbo
12 Sergey Firsanov (Rus) Gazprom-Rusvelo 0:01:39
13 Bob Jungels (Lux) Etixx - Quick-Step 0:01:41
14 Mikel Landa Meana (Spa) Team Sky 0:01:43
15 Ryder Hesjedal (Can) Trek-Segafredo
16 Igor Anton Hernandez (Spa) Dimension Data
17 Vincenzo Nibali (Ita) Astana Pro Team
18 Michele Scarponi (Ita) Astana Pro Team
19 Diego Ulissi (Ita) Lampre - Merida
20 Andrey Amador (CRc) Movistar Team
21 Rein Taaramae (Est) Team Katusha
22 Hubert Dupont (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale
23 Joe Dombrowski (USA) Cannondale Pro Cycling
24 Mikel Nieve (Spa) Team Sky 0:01:51
25 Carlos Verona (Spa) Etixx - Quick-Step 0:01:57
26 Stefano Pirazzi (Ita) Bardiani CSF 27 Nicolas Roche (Irl) Team Sky 0:02:00
28 Gianluca Brambilla (Ita) Etixx - Quick-Step 0:02:12
29 David De La Cruz (Spa) Etixx - Quick-Step 0:02:16
30 Maxime Monfort (Bel) Lotto Soudal
31 Davide Formolo (Ita) Cannondale Pro Cycling
32 Tanel Kangert (Est) Astana Pro Team
33 Francesco Manuel Bongiorno (Ita) Bardiani CSF
34 Giulio Ciccone (Ita) Bardiani CSF 0:02:28
35 Andre Cardoso (Por) Cannondale Pro Cycling
36 Giovanni Visconti (Ita) Movistar Team 0:02:48
37 Pawel Poljanski (Pol) Tinkoff Team 0:02:52
38 Darwin Atapuma (Col) BMC Racing Team 0:02:58
39 Matteo Montaguti (Ita) AG2R La Mondiale
40 Ivan Rovny (Rus) Tinkoff Team
1 Tom Dumoulin (Ned) Team Giant-Alpecin 24:22:15
2 Jakob Fuglsang (Den) Astana Pro Team 0:00:26
3 Ilnur Zakarin (Rus) Team Katusha 0:00:28
4 Bob Jungels (Lux) Etixx - Quick-Step 0:00:35
5 Steven Kruijswijk (Ned) Team LottoNl-Jumbo 0:00:38
6 Alejandro Valverde (Spa) Movistar Team 0:00:41
7 Diego Ulissi (Ita) Lampre - Merida
8 Esteban Chaves (Col) Orica-GreenEdge 0:00:44
9 Vincenzo Nibali (Ita) Astana Pro Team 0:00:47
10 Kanstantsin Siutsou (Blr) Dimension Data 0:00:49
11 Rigoberto Uran (Col) Cannondale Pro Cycling 0:00:51
12 Rafal Majka (Pol) Tinkoff Team 0:00:56
13 Domenico Pozzovivo (Ita) AG2R La Mondiale
14 Rein Taaramae (Est) Team Katusha 0:01:06
15 Mikel Landa Meana (Spa) Team Sky 0:01:08
16 Andrey Amador (CRc) Movistar Team 0:01:11
17 Michele Scarponi (Ita) Astana Pro Team 0:01:13
18 Sergey Firsanov (Rus) Gazprom-Rusvelo 0:01:14
19 Nicolas Roche (Irl) Team Sky 0:01:15
20 Stefano Pirazzi (Ita) Bardiani CSF 0:01:21
21 Ryder Hesjedal (Can) Trek-Segafredo 0:01:38
22 Gianluca Brambilla (Ita) Etixx - Quick-Step 0:01:47
23 Davide Formolo (Ita) Cannondale Pro Cycling 0:01:51
24 Tanel Kangert (Est) Astana Pro Team 0:01:59
25 David De La Cruz (Spa) Etixx - Quick-Step 0:02:12
26 Carlos Verona (Spa) Etixx - Quick-Step 0:02:18
27 Giovanni Visconti (Ita) Movistar Team 0:02:42
28 Maxime Monfort (Bel) Lotto Soudal 0:02:44
29 Georg Preidler (Aut) Team Giant-Alpecin 0:02:49
30 Matteo Montaguti (Ita) AG2R La Mondiale 0:03:13
31 Andre Cardoso (Por) Cannondale Pro Cycling 0:03:16
32 Pawel Poljanski (Pol) Tinkoff Team 0:03:37
33 Sebastian Henao (Col) Team Sky 0:03:49
34 Darwin Atapuma (Col) BMC Racing Team 0:03:53
1 Bob Jungels (Lux) Etixx - Quick-Step 24:22:50
2 Davide Formolo (Ita) Cannondale Pro Cycling 0:01:16
3 Carlos Verona (Spa) Etixx - Quick-Step 0:01:43
4 Sebastian Henao (Col) Team Sky 0:03:14
5 Valerio Conti (Ita) Lampre - Merida 0:04:26
6 Merhawi Kudus (Eri) Dimension Data 0:04:27
7 Tobias Ludvigsson (Swe) Team Giant-Alpecin 0:08:24
8 Ian Boswell (USA) Team Sky 0:10:18
9 Nathan Brown (USA) Cannondale Pro Cycling 0:12:03
10 Stefan Kueng (Swi) BMC Racing Team 0:12:43
2 Arnaud Demare (Fra) FDJ 88 pts
3 Maarten Tjallingii (Ned) Team LottoNl-Jumbo 80
4 André Greipel (Ger) Lotto Soudal 69
5 Tom Dumoulin (Ned) Team Giant-Alpecin 58
6 Elia Viviani (Ita) Team Sky 58
7 Diego Ulissi (Ita) Lampre - Merida 50
8 Giacomo Berlato (Ita) Nippo - Vini Fantini 44
9 Giacomo Nizzolo (Ita) Trek-Segafredo 43
10 Moreno Hofland (Ned) Team LottoNl-Jumbo 42
1 Damiano Cunego (Ita) Nippo - Vini Fantini 18 pts
2 Tim Wellens (Bel) Lotto Soudal 17
3 Alessandro Bisolti (Ita) Nippo - Vini Fantini 16
4 Jakob Fuglsang (Den) Astana Pro Team 8
5 Alexander Kolobnev (Rus) Gazprom-Rusvelo 8
6 Nicola Boem (Ita) Bardiani CSF 7
7 Ilnur Zakarin (Rus) Team Katusha 6
8 Stefano Pirazzi (Ita) Bardiani CSF 6
9 Eugert Zhupa (Alb) Wilier Triestina-Southeast 6
10 Julen Amezqueta (Spa) Wilier Triestina-Southeast 6
1 Maarten Tjallingii (Ned) Team LottoNl-Jumbo 40 pts
2 Giacomo Berlato (Ita) Nippo - Vini Fantini 21
3 Daniel Oss (Ita) BMC Racing Team 20
1 Astana Pro Team 73:08:53
2 Etixx - Quick-Step 0:01:14
3 Team Sky 0:01:23
4 Cannondale Pro Cycling 0:01:27
5 Movistar Team 0:02:25
6 Team Katusha 0:02:36
7 Dimension Data 0:04:34
8 Bardiani CSF 0:04:42
9 Tinkoff Team 0:04:57
10 AG2R La Mondiale 0:05:40
11 Team Giant-Alpecin 0:08:16
12 Lampre - Merida 0:08:36
13 Orica-GreenEdge 0:09:03
14 Trek-Segafredo 0:12:06
15 Team LottoNl-Jumbo 0:14:49
16 Lotto Soudal 0:20:59
17 Wilier Triestina-Southeast 0:30:28
18 BMC Racing Team 0:30:46
19 Gazprom-Rusvelo 0:33:15
20 IAM Cycling 0:43:43
21 Nippo - Vini Fantini 0:50:43
22 FDJ 1:03:07

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