Has the Giro organization made the Tour of Italy too tough, misclassified it or is it just that the tenors can’t do better?
The ride to Tre Cime di Lavaredo, with the Passo di Giau along the way, was much awaited, but the expected spectacle did not materialize.
Primoz Roglic made cycling hearts beat faster before the penultimate climb. He planned to switch to his climbing bike, but surprisingly there was no early attack.
Only in the penultimate kilometer did we finally get fireworks between the pink men. Roglic went first, ran on a counter from Thomas, but he stopped with the finish line in sight.
With an ultimate sprint, Roglic finally took 3 seconds back on the Welshman, who will start the (too) dreaded climb time trial in pole position tomorrow. It’s game over for Joao Almeida. He will be third in Rome after losing by 20 seconds.
And the ride? That was for Santiago Buitrago after a day in the flight. He did have all the trouble in the world with Giro revelation and all-rounder Derek Gee.
A mini tap of 3 seconds in favor of Roglic is ultimately the verdict of the queen stage of this Giro. The Slovenian was quite satisfied with that afterwards. “This is good. I have my good legs back.”
Then the gaze went straight to tomorrow. “I’m going to give everything. If I didn’t have faith in a good outcome, I wouldn’t start it. The best will just win in the end.”
The pink man was also quite satisfied with his performance after the ride. Yet Geraint Thomas made a mistake, he thought. “I started 400m from the end, but soon realized that it was still too far. I then tried to persevere, but Roglic still made it over the last 100m.”
“I lose a few seconds on the finish line, but it is good that I was able to gain time at Almeida. It will be very exciting tomorrow. It will be great fun to watch, but terrible to do yourself.”
At Renaat Schotte, Thomas also praised Laurens De Plus. “He’s been riding incredibly strong for a whole Giro, and again today. He always keeps fighting and drives very fast, just like the rest of the team. Hopefully I can finish it for them tomorrow.”