Giro d’Italia 2022 : Stage 12 – Stefano Oldani takes his first pro win

Stage 12 of the Giro d’Italia can be described as a thoroughly enjoyable and wholesome day of bike racing culminating in a surprise Italian win from the day’s breakaway. Stefano Oldani (Alpecin-Fenix) took the victory from the formidable front trio after out-sprinting breakaway companions Lorenzo Rota (Intermarche Wanty-Gobert) and Gijs Leemreize (Jumbo-Visma) in beautiful Genoa. A calm day for the general classification riders saw Juan Pedro Lopez (Trek-Segafredo) retain the Maglia Rosa for another stage with no changes in the Top 10. However Wilco Kelderman (Bora-hansgrohe), Lucas Hamilton (Team BikeExchange) and Bauke Mollema (Trek-Segafredo) leapt back into the Top 20 after finishing 8 minutes ahead of the main bunch.

Fast and Furious At Last!

After several slower (if we’re being generous) days at this year’s Giro d’Italia, it was mightily fun to see the riders going hell for leather from the drop of the flag today. The pace was fierce and the battle to get in the day’s breakaway even more so. A stage with three categorised climbs and a flattish finish, this one was earmarked as a day for a puncheur or climber who didn’t have his eyes set on the overall, and who could escape the bunch. For well over 50km of the stage, try as they might, no one could get the elastic to snap, until eventually a group of approximately 22 riders got away with some massive hitters amongst them.

What Happened Next…

With some cycling-blockbuster names in the breakaway, all focus turned to the heated contest up front. Who would make the first move? Where would the first attack happen? As Robbie McEwen quite rightly pointed out, the ascents were less-so climbs and more-so launch pads for the perfect ambush.

Naturally, a lot of attention was being paid to Matthieu van der Poel – “long-range-attack” is, after all, Mathieu’s middle name – but also to his Alpecin-Fenix teammates, who were represented strongly in this front group. And yet, the most significant move of the day came from the team who continue to punch above their weight – Intermarche Wanty Gobert’s Lorenzo Rota hit out on the final climb and caught many of the group off-guard.

Soon joined by fellow Italian Stefano Oldani, and Jumbo’s Gijs Leemreize, a formidable trio was formed, and they never looked back.

The chase behind, regardless of the powerhouses involved, fell apart. They could not work together and never brought the gap to the charging three leaders back under 30 seconds.

The trio, who didn’t have a single professional win between them, practically flew towards the finale and for one of them, a very special result.

Cat and Mouse

Leemreize almost took his Italian breakaway companions by surprise as he attempted a long range attack with under 1km to go, but Oldani showed huge strength as he closed him down with Rota just managing to get back on terms.

A sprint was now inevitable, but who out of the three would have enough energy left to take their first ever win? A game of cat and mouse ensued, with Leemreize once again trying to take it on from the front, though not surprisingly he had already burnt all his matches and soon fell off the pace. Stefano Oldani came past him, and with Lorenzo Rota on his wheel, had to grit his teeth and put it all on the line to secure his first professional victory, and a second stage win in a row for the Italians in Italy.

But truly an exceptionally exciting day for all three of our leading riders.

GC Gains

Having lost huge chunks of time over the past gruelling days, Kelderman, Mollema, and Hamilton, all a part of the day’s 22-man breakaway, stormed their way back into the GC Top 20 by finishing 8 minutes ahead of the peloton and GC men. They end the day sitting now only approximately 3 minutes back on the maglia rosa. The question is whether they will be able to further those gains on the general classification, or if the trials to come will prove too much.


Last word

All the results

Stage results 

1 Stefano Oldani (Alpecin-Fenix) 4:26:47

2 Lorenzo Rota (Intermarche Wanty-Gobert) same time

3 Gijs Leemreize (Jumbo-Visma) +0:02

4 Bauke Mollema (Trek Segafredo) +0:57

5 Santiago Buitrago (Bahrain Victorious) s/t

GC Top 10 

1 Juan Pedro Lopez (Trek-Segafredo) 51:19:07

2 Richard Carapaz (Ineos Grenadiers) +0:12

2 Joao Almedia (UAE Team Emirates) +0:12

3 Romain Bardet (Team DSM) +0:14

5 Jai Hindley (Bora-hansgrohe) +0:20

6 Guillaume Martin (Cofidis) +0:28

7 Mikel Landa (Bahrain Victorious) +0:29

8 Domenico Pozzovivo (Intermarche-Wanty-Gobert) +0:54

9 Emanuel Buchmann (Bora-hansgrohe) +1:09

10 Pello Bilbao (Bahrain Victorious) +1:22

All the jerseys

Leader’s jersey : Juan Pedro Lopez (Trek-Segafredo)

Points jersey : Arnaud Demare (Groupama-FDJ)

King of the Mountains: Diego Rosa (EOLO-Kometa)

Best young rider: Juan Pedro Lopez (Trek-Segafredo)

Team : Bora-hansgrohe 

For full race results, go to CyclingNews

Official Giro d’Italia website is here

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