It’s been a stonking race. Seizing the maglia azzurra with his solo win on the Terminillo stage, Nairo Quintana conquered the summits and seas to lift that magnificent trident trophy for the second time. He was pushed all the way to the line by Rohan Dennis, the winner of the final ITT stage, which propelled the Australian TT champion above third-placed Thibaut Pinot.
Rider of the Race
I’m handing this to runner-up Rohan Dennis. The 26-year old Australian won both time-trial stages and wore the leader’s jersey for a day. Perhaps better known for his skills against the clock, he’s won a number of stage races: Tour of Alberta (2013), Santos Tour Down Under (2016), USA Pro Challenge (2016) and La Provence (2017). Rumour has it he’s looking to move up a gear and challenge for leadership in a grand tour – and why not? This race is a mini grand tour and he occupied the top two slots, before slipping to fifth overall after the queen stage, where he finished 15th. He pulled himself back into contention but despite a lung-searing 11:18 effort was unable to overcome the 1:06 deficit to Quintana over only a 1okm TT parcours.
Post-race, Dennis praised his team:
It has been a very good week for both myself and the team. To start off with a win and then hold onto the leader’s jersey for three days was great. I am really happy that I was able to take the win today and move into second overall on the GC. The work the team did for me over the whole week was incredible. Today’s victory really shows that all of the guys’ faith in me was worth it.
Last year’s winner was Fernando Gaviria (Quick-Step Floors) who pipped Peter Sagan to a stage win on Monday’s penultimate stage. This year, it’s another young Columbian, 20-year-old Egan Bernal (Androni Giocattoli-Sidermec) whose consistent placings saw him finish 16th overall, narrowly losing the best young rider’s jersey to Bob Jungles (Quick-Step Floors) in the final stage.
A precocious talent who excelled as a junior on the mountain biking scene, winning numerous events, including the Pan-American junior championships in 2013, followed by silver medal in 2014 at the junior world championships. Remind you of anyone? He’s into his second of a four-year deal with Androni and we should keep an eye on him. Also, worthy of note is his teammate, 22-year-old neo-pro, Davide Ballerini who carried off the king of the mountain’s jersey.
Despite being one of the most recognisable trophies in cycling, the large gilded trident was only introduced in 2010 and it arises each year from the ocean in a wholly appropriate ceremony.
Known as the Sea Master Trophy, it’s associated with Neptune, the Roman sea god and Poseidon, the Greek equivalent, who used their tridents to create new bodies of water, stir up tidal waves, tsunamis and storms and even earthquakes. I think it’s fair to say the riders kicked up a storm this week!
1 Nairo Quintana (Movistar) 25:56:27
2 Rohan Dennis (BMC) +0.25
3 Thibaut Pinot (FDJ) +0:36
4 Primoz Roglic (Lotto NL – Jumbo) +0.45
5 Geraint Thomas (Sky) +0:58
Points Jersey: Peter Sagan (Bora-hansgrohe)
King of the Mountains Jersey: Davide Ballerini (Androni Giocattoli-Sidermec)
Best Young Rider: Bob Jungels (Quick-Step Floors)
Team Classification Leader: Movistar
Stage 1 TTT: BMC Final KM here
Stage 2: Geraint Thomas (Sky) Final KM here
Stage 3: Peter Sagan (Bora-hansgrohe) Final KM here
Stage 4: Nairo Quintana (Movistar) Final KM here
Stage 5: Peter Sagan (Bora-hansgrohe) Final KM here
Stage 6: Fernando Gaviria (Quick-Step Floors) Final KM here
Stage 7 ITT: Rohan Dennis (BMC) Final KM to come
Links: official race website
Featured Image: Tirreno-Adriatico 2017 Podium ©GETTY Corbis Sport / Tim de Waele