Friday the 13th was not unlucky for Andre Greipel, who completed a hat-trick of stages for Lotto Soudal with a scorching sprint win in stage 7 of the Giro d’Italia. Giacomo Nizzolo (Trek-Segafredo) and Sacha Modolo (Lampre-Merida) hung in for second and third. Tom Dumoulin (Giant-Alpecin) wears the maglia rosa for another day.
Rider of the Race
One of these stages, we’ll pick a rider who isn’t the stage winner as rider of the race but today is not that day. With five Giro stage wins to his name, the mighty Andre Greipel is now the most successful German to ride the race. This statistic might change as he and his compatriot Marcel Kittel continue to duke it out, but I’m glad he got to it first.
His sprint today was magnificent – weaving in and out of the gaps on a twisty finish, blasting past Orica’s boy wonder, Caleb Ewan (who must be wondering if he has any hope of winning a sprint with a German in the race) and barely registering Nizzolo and Modolo. The Lampre rider commented after the stage:
I thought I’d got it but he passed me at twice my speed. There’s nothing I could have done to beat him.
Greipel’s made it three in a row for Lotto-Soudal and he takes the maglia rossa off the shoulders of Kittel. With yesterday’s stage victor Tim Wellens in the KOM jersey, the Prosecco will be flowing at dinner …
Adam Hansen has a cheeky grin and a hug for teammate Andre Greipel
Drop and puncture
To take a phrase out of Fabian Cancellara‘s book, it was ‘a shit day of #unluck’ for Marcel Kittel. Dropped on the last climb, the ArgoSunGod made a valiant effort to get back into the peloton for the sprint finish – and he succeeded … And then he punctured 6km out and even if the bike change had been done at the speed of light, the Etixx rider would not have been able to catch back on to a peloton that was winding up to a furious pace. But he took it in his stride – and even included a few little ghosty emojis …
A man in denial
Tom Dumoulin is still playing down his interest in fighting for the GC … by staying in pink for another day. Tomorrow’s Cat 2 climb, complete with gravel roads up to the summit, will be the biggest test of the day for him but if he gets over that in good shape and descends well, he’ll be in a pink skinsuit for Sunday’s ITT, when he could put another chunk of time into the ‘proper’ GC contenders. With 41secs on Alejandro Valverde and 47secs on Vincenzo Nibali, we could see his nearest rival at over 2min down by Sunday evening.
1. Andre Greipel (Lotto Soudal) 5:01:08
2. Giacomo Nizzolo (Trek Segafredo) same time
3. Sacha Modolo (Lampre-Merida) s/t
4. Caleb Ewan (Orica-GreenEDGE) s/t
5. Enrico Battaglin (LottoNL-Jumbo) s/t
1. Tom Dumoulin (Giant-Alpecin) 29:23:23
2. Jakob Fuglsang (Astana) +0:26
3. Ilnur Zakarin (Katusha) +0:28
4. Bob Jungels (Etixx-Quick Step) +0.35
5. Steven Kruijswijk (LottoNL-Jumbo) +0.38
All the jerseys
Leader’s jersey: Tom Dumoulin (Giant Alpecin)
Point’s jersey: Andre Greipel (Lotto Soudal)
KOM jersey: Tim Wellens (Lotto Soudal)
Best young rider: Bob Jungels (Etixx-Quick Step)
For full review of the stage, go to CyclingNews
Header image: ©Getty Images/AFP/Luk Benies