The victory in stage 8 of the Giro d’Italia was contested by the breakaway, with Alex Dowsett holding off his five breakie companions to deliver Israel Start-Up Nation their first Grand Tour victory. The peloton were happy to roll in nearly 14 minutes later. Joao Almeida (Deceuninck Quickstep) retains the maglia rosa while Mitchelton Scott’s Simon Philip Yates did not take the start line after testing positive for Covid 19.
The finishing laps in Vieste featured a nasty little climb that would prove to be scene of most of the tactical battles. With two riders in the six man break – two former hour record holders to boot – the Yalla Academy guys had the advantage. That advantage looked lost as Dowsett’s initial attack was caught and he and teammate Matthias Brandle were both dropped on the first ascent. But all was not lost as they regrouped and Brandle brought them back to group.
Dowsett made his winning attack with around 18km to go. In full TT mode, his time gap grew to 50seconds, enough of a buffer to see him safely over the climb for the last time. Legs screaming at him to stop in that final agonising kilometre, all he had to do was avoid a limping dog (!) and cross the line for his second Giro victory.
Whole lotta love for Alex
Okay, okay!! I KNOW the stage wasn’t the most exciting, but see, here’s the thing. Never take your eye off the Giro, you never know when it’s going to strike, make your heart race and ultimately make you reach for the tissues. Welcome to the Alex Dowsett appreciation post.
I don’t think there was a cycling fan on twitter today who wasn’t thrilled for Alex. Look how much it meant to him.
and his post race interview had us in tears
Here’s hoping that new contract is being printed ready for signing as we speak!
The congratulations rolled in
And to think his day didn’t start too well. At least we know the secret to his success!
Simon Philip Yates
Simon Yates hasn’t looked his attackity self at this Giro, and Mitchelton Scott announced this morning that he would not take the start line after testing positive for Covid 19
As the rest of the riders and staff have tested negative, the team can continue to race. We wish him a swift recovery.
Stage 8 Results
1 Alex Dowsett (Israel Start-Up Nation) 4:50:09
2 Salvatore Puccio (INEOS Grenadiers) +1:15
3 Matthew Holmes (Lotto Soudal) same time
4 Joey Rosskopf (CCC) s/t
5 Mathias Brandle (Israel Start-Up Nation)
GC Top 10
1 Joao Almeida (Deceuninck-Quickstep) 24:48:29
2 Pello Bilbao (Bahrain McLaren) +0:43
3 Wilco Kelderman (Team Sunweb) +0:48
4 Harm Vanhoucke (Lotto Soudal) +0:59
5 Vincenzo Nibali (Trek-Segafredo) +1:01
6 Domenico Pozzovivo (NTT Pro Cycling) +1:05
7 Jakob Fuglsang (Astana Pro Team) +1:19
8 Steven Kruijswijk (Jumbo-Visma) +1:21
9 Patrick Konrad (Bora-Hansgrohe) +1:26
10 Rafal Majka (Bora-Hansgrohe) +1:32
All the jerseys
Leader’s jersey Joao Almeida (Deceuninck-QuickStep)
Points jersey Arnaud Demare (Groupama-FDJ)
King of the Mountains Filippo Ganna (INEOS-Grenadiers)
Best Young Rider Joao Almeida (Deceuninck-QuickStep)
For full race reviews, go to cyclingnews.
Official race website: Giro d’Italia
Header: ©GETTY / Velo / Stuart Franklin