There we go. It's the last week in the Giro and the race is still quite open in my opinion. Kruijswijk is one of my favourite riders in the peloton, I like him very much and went to take a picture with him long time ago, in another Giro, when he wasn't that famous and still racing for Rabobank. I believe Kruijswijk can win the Giro but it's going to be hard, first of all because he hasn't got a strong team.
They are all lions at Lotto-Jumbo, they race with the heart and never give up. Still Team Movistar and Team Astana are stronger. Orica-GE maybe not, so Kruijswijk and Chaves will be probably alone on the next stages last climb, while Valverde and Nibali will probably have at least one mate.
Now if you ask me who's in the better shape, Nibali or Valverde, I must say Valverde. That's why in my opinion Valverde is going to win this Giro: he's the strongest and he has got the best team.
Anything is still possible though: in a mountain stage 3 minutes are nothing and even 5 minutes can be few. In fact Majka and Zakarin could be on the podium at the end of the game. You never know.
A top ten position is now a more likely goal for Pozzovivo, Uran, Atapuma, Monfort and Henao. They should also try to win a stage but I suspect it's going to be hard because the main contenders will be all there. The Giro has been disappointing for Pozzovivo, Uran, Atapuma and Monfort, team leaders with some expectation who achieved exactly nothing. Only Atapuma went close to win a stage but was never in contention for the Jersey and now, approaching his terrain, is too far in the overall.
It's a different situation for Team Sky that has lost his leader when he was in a pefect take-off position. Their reaction was right and strong: a great stage victory by Mikel Nieve, the victory on Cima Pantani by David Lopez Garcia and Sergio Henao still in contention for the White Jersey. A top ten position by Henao - quite hard I see but possible - should be a wonderful results and they will keep fighting for it, I'm sure. Steven Roche is way down so he could go for a stage.
Etixx-QS had an oustanding Giro, it will be perfect if Bob Jungels can keep his White Jersey, but they can be already very satisfied. Team Trek-Segafredo at the opposite was very disappointing: their leader Ryder Hesjedale eventually retired but he was nowhere close to the top. Giacomo Nizzolo is wearing the Red Jersey but still lacks a victory in the Giro and got it because his main opponents - Kittel, Greipel, Viviani - abandoned. I think he can't be too proud.
1 Steven Kruijswijk (Ned) Team LottoNl-Jumbo 60:41:22
2 Esteban Chaves (Col) Orica-GreenEdge 0:02:12
3 Vincenzo Nibali (Ita) Astana Pro Team 0:02:51
4 Alejandro Valverde (Spa) Movistar Team 0:03:29
Podium still possible
5 Rafal Majka (Pol) Tinkoff Team 0:04:38
6 Ilnur Zakarin (Rus) Team Katusha 0:04:40
7 Andrey Amador (CRc) Movistar Team 0:05:27
8 Bob Jungels (Lux) Etixx - Quick-Step 0:07:14
9 Kanstantsin Siutsou (Blr) Dimension Data 0:07:37
10 Jakob Fuglsang (Den) Astana Pro Team 0:07:55
11 Domenico Pozzovivo (Ita) AG2R La Mondiale 0:08:12
12 Rigoberto Uran (Col) Cannondale Pro Cycling 0:08:19
13 Giovanni Visconti (Ita) Movistar Team 0:16:31
14 Stefano Pirazzi (Ita) Bardiani CSF 0:17:03
15 Darwin Atapuma (Col) BMC Racing Team 0:17:21
16 Maxime Monfort (Bel) Lotto Soudal 0:17:37
17 Hubert Dupont (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale 0:18:47
18 Sebastian Henao (Col) Team Sky 0:18:48
19 Matteo Montaguti (Ita) AG2R La Mondiale 0:25:18
20 Andre Cardoso (Por) Cannondale Pro Cycling 0:26:02