After yesterday’s bonkers day, the GC contenders took it easy on Stage 15 of the 2022 Giro d’Italia and let a big break go. In that break was Trek-Segafredo’s Giulio Ciccone, who had diamonds in his legs. Racing with head and heart, he attacked on the steepest part of the final climb to take an emotional solo victory. Second on the stage was Bahrain’s Santiago Buitrago and third was Antonio Pedrero (Movistar). Only the KOM jersey changes shoulders tonight, back to Jumbo’s Koen Bouwman and Guillaume Martin (Cofidis) hustles his way back into the top ten.
Welcome to VeloVoices’ Stage 8 recap, powered by Vanilla Coca Cola, COVID-19, and Fever Dreams of Extra Thick Milkshakes. In what can only be described as an ultimate showing of power, talent, and general beardedness, Lotto-Soudal’s Thomas De Gendt took his second-ever Giro d’Italia stage win out of a small breakaway group. After nearly single-handedly pulling his companions clear of an eager chase group that featured Alpecin-Fenix’s Mathieu Van der Poel and Bini Girmay (Wanty-Intermarche), De Gendt crossed the line ahead of Davide Gabburo (Bardiani-CSF-Faizanè) and Jorge Arcas (Movistar). Harm Vanhoucke, De Gendt’s teammate, finished fourth, arms raised in celebration.
There was no change of the jerseys and very little change in the GC, other than Mr. Guillaume “Philosopher” Martin catapulting himself 24 places up to fourth overall after a day in the breakaway, cutting his deficit of 4.06 at the start of the stage by 3 full minutes. Trek’s Juan Pedro Lopez maintains the maglia rosa for at least one more day.
Stage 15 was the start of the Pyrenees leg of this year’s Tour de France and the GC guys needed to do some attacking. Not necessarily to put Tadej Pogacar under pressure, but to separate themselves in the top 5. At the end of the day, the only team to have done something different was Jumbo-Visma, who pushed all the chips to the middle of the table and came away an exhilarating stage win for Sepp Kuss, some pox points and most combative rider for Wout van Aert and Jonas Vingegaard holding his own in the yellow jersey group and getting back onto the virtual GC podium. Did anyone gain any time on Pogacar? Did they hell …