It was supposed to be a containable stage – one where the GC would let a break go and wait for the climbs to spring into action. Oh, but this Giro keeps the surprises coming. A break wasn’t allowed to go until well over 100km had been ridden (in two hours!) and the fast pace never slowed. By the time the peloton negotiated the hairpins on the Selvino descent and came careering into Bergamo, with its cobbley twists and turns, there was a small leading group from which Bob Jungels sprinted to his first GT stage win. Tom Dumoulin stays in pink.
Rider of the Race
I said at the end of this stage that I might just use the highlight reel to justify my pick of young Bob Jungels as rider of the race. And so I will:
There’s really nothing else to say, now, is there? Except chapeau, Bob! Champers all round tonight at the team dinner!
It was the fastest stage in this year’s Giro so far – what with a break not being allowed to go until well after 100km of attacking, counter-attacking, breaking away, reeling back, at top speed, and an Orica-Scott team steaming on the front of the peloton, to make sure their man Adam Yates had a chance to make up some time when they hit the climbs – the race finished a good 20mins before even the fastest predictions. It was a stressful day for the maglia rosa, just from the chaos, and Dumoulin looked exhausted at the end of the stage.
He also got pipped at the post by Nairo Quintana. Earlier in the race, Quintana crashed by taking a hairpin too wide and Dumoulin slowed his group down while the Colombian caught back up. “I think the Movistar guy made the mistake himself, he took to the front and he missed the corner and that’s why Quintana crashed. It was not really smart of them, but we decided to wait for Quintana to come back,” Dumoulin said in the post-stage interviews. It was the sporting thing to do but what he must have thought when he saw Quintana streaking away through the clot of riders to bag a sprinter’s second place and 6 bonus seconds to cut his deficit by … well, 6 seconds.
Ou est Kenny?! Non! Kenny!
Quintana’s crash might have raised his heart rate as he scrambled to catch the peloton, but luckily there was no last damage. There were, however, crashes on the descent and run into Bergamo that were a little more serious. One of our favourites, Kenny Elissonde, went into what looked like a low wall along with Davide Formolo and Michael Woods from Cannondale. At first, it looked that Kenny wasn’t going to get back on his bike, but we’re happy to report he did finish the race. Hopefully he’ll feel well enough to carry on by Tuesday.
Then there was the horrific flip over an unflagged road sign by Astana’s Tanel Kangert, which left him in the middle of the road, holding his left arm. With 10km to go, the race was at full speed so it was nothing short of a Giro miracle that he came away with a broken elbow – and not something much much worse.
1 Bob Jungels (Quick-Step Floors) 4:16:51
2 Nairo Quintana (Movistar) same time
3 Thibaut Pinot (FDJ) s/t
4 Adam Yates (Orica-Scott) s/t
5 Domenico Pozzovivo (Ag2r La Mondiale) s/t
GC Top 5
1 Tom Dumoulin (Sunweb) 63:48:08
2 Nairo Quintana (Movistar) +2.41
3 Thibaut Pinot (FDJ) +3:21
4 Vincenzo Nibali (Bahrain-Merida) +3:40
5 Ilnur Zakarin (Katusha-Alpecin) +4:24
All the jerseys
Leader’s jersey: Tom Dumoulin (Sunweb)
Points jersey: Fernando Gaviria (Quick-Step Floors)
KOM jersey: Tom Dumoulin (Sunweb)
Best young rider: Bob Jungels (Quick-Step Floors)
For full review of the stage, go to Cycling News
Header Image: Bob Jungels ©GETTY/Corbis/Tim de Waele