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Bicycle Racing News and Opinion,
Monday, May 29, 2017

Back to news and opinion index page for links to archived stories | Commentary | Our YouTube page
2017 Tour de France | 2017 Giro d'Italia

Statistics show that of those who contract the habit of eating, very few survive. - George Bernard Shaw

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Giro d'Italia Stage 21 news

We'll start with winner Tom Dumoulin's Team Sunweb race summary:

In the final showdown to an intense three weeks of racing, Team Sunweb's Tom Dumoulin (NED) secures the overall victory at the 100th anniversary edition of the Giro d'Italia, Team Sunweb's first Grand Tour general classification win.

Team Sunweb made history today in what is a huge step, becoming the first German team to win the general classification at the Giro d'Italia. An incredible three week long fight from the entire team landed Dumoulin in a perfect position ahead of today's individual time trial in Milan, with just 53 seconds separating Team Sunweb's Dutch time trial champion from the Maglia Rosa. When Dumoulin arrived at the second check point, he was the virtual Maglia Rosa and was able to continue perfectly powering to glory on his Giant Trinity Advanced SL, winning the Giro d'Italia by 31 seconds. With a long term vision in mind the team have helped to grow Dumoulin into the rider he is today, Team Sunweb continue to do the same with their current and future German talents, with the aim of progressing to this level in the future.

An emotional Dumoulin said of his win: "This is incredible, I can't believe it. Beforehand I knew that I needed to stay calm but I almost couldn't. I am happy for myself but also happy that so many special people around me were able to share this moment with me and to have the team up on the podium with me really topped it all. It's been a great atmosphere with the team over the past few weeks and I can't thank the team enough for all that they have done. All of our hard work has paid off and I couldn't be more thrilled."

Tom Dumoulin

Tom Dumoulin savors his victory

Team Sunweb's Giro d'Italia coach Luke Roberts (AUS) added: "With everyone so tired we knew that today would be really unpredictable, but within the first few kilometres I knew that this was going to be a good time trial for Tom. To finish off these three weeks with a win is brilliant. We've had some ups and downs but the whole team have done an amazing job and their incredible efforts have been rewarded."

Team Sunweb CEO Iwan Spekenbrink (NED) said: "From everyone that has been involved with the team from its beginning to everyone that joined later on, this comes as a huge reward for everybody's hard work and dedication. We all share one united goal and each and every person works tirelessly towards it, always on the basis of new and challenging ideas to keep growing our team and setting higher goals. I am so proud of the team and Tom, as well as everybody behind the scenes who has made this possible. This really is a brilliant achievement for the entire Team Sunweb family."

Nairo Quintana's Movistar team posted this report:

Nairo Quintana came just 31 seconds short of winning the 100th Giro d'Italia and claiming what would have been his second overall success in the first Grand Tour of the season. The Colombian and his Movistar Team, holders of the pink jersey for three days and true fighters all over the race - especially into the final week - to make up the distance which Dutchman Tom Dumoulin (SUN) had gained over all of his rivals into the first time trial in Foligno, saw the 53-second advantage the 'Cóndor' held before the 29.3km ITT showdown from Monza to Milan vanishing at the last day of racing.

Quintana, whose 27th place in the time trial -1'39" behind the winner- was enough to share the podium at Milan's Duomo cathedral with Dumoulin (1st) and Vincenzo Nibali (TBM, 3rd), gave everything to pay back an extraordinary Movistar Team for their efforts, all nine riders completing a flawless race with all-around strong performances. Amador, Anacona, Bennati, De La Parte, Herrada, Rojas, Sutherland and Gorka Izagirre (author of the Blues' first stage win in Peschici, a streak Quintana extended with his 'tappa e maglia' atop the Blockhaus) took care of their leader as no other team could have done this month.

Nairo Quintana

Nairo Quintana's final moments in pink

The Spanish outfit also accomplished a milestone feat in their four-decade history: winning a first team GC in the Giro and completing a treble of Grand Tours alongside the Tour and the Vuelta -all already obtained in Movistar colours; the last three (VCE, '15; TDF, '16; GDI, '17) in barely 20 months- which only five other teams in history have been able to claim.

Nairo Quintana: "A podium finish is not something to be disappointed about. We're not machines, we can't do everything we want as we want before a race. Sometimes, you don't get the prize you want, even when you work hard to accomplish your goals. More in contrary: we're happy, satisfied about this result. The best thing in this Giro was the great teamwork - I have no words to describe how grateful I am towards the whole Movistar Team. We could have done it better, maybe worse, but we're on the podium and that's what counts right now. Dumoulin didn't look like the main rival for us before the race, yet he bested everyone with excellent TT and mountain performance. He really deserves this victory.

"We continue to grow, to gain experience. Today's TT is a big experience, really. There were also moutnain stages where I could have done better, but the legs just felt like they did. I went through some illness at a few stages into the final week, days where I could just manage to stay with the GC group. Still, we knew before today's TT that we needed a bigger advantage heading into the final TT. 70km of time trials are too many when you've got to defend yourself against riders like Tom. I think we did a nice job at those, though.

"This Giro makes me feel even more confident about my consistency on Grand Tours. If you prepare well, you'll be up there with the best guys in the race - that's a huge boost of morale. We're willing to continue working hard after this, and several things are looking good before the Tour - my legs seem to be doing well. Also, there will be many details to correct, things to polish. The Giro has been a huge test whose results we'll have to analyze from now. I want to thank all fans, especially those in Colombia, for their support and messages. We left everything on the road, and I hope we made them proud about our efforts."

Eusebio Unzué: "To be honest, I'm delighted with the way Nairo was able to contain his rivals to remain in second place. We knew before today's TT that a 53-second gap in such a flat TT would not be enough to retain the Maglia Rosa, yet Nairo performed really well to his standards. We just didn't stand a big chance against such a strong rival as Dumoulin. He already left some signs of his GC-contending caliber at the 2015 Vuelta, and succeeded in grand style here in the Giro. His performance over the TTs and also in the mountains was impeccable. Regarding ourselves, we're satisfied about Nairo and his podium finish; those two stages by Gorka and Quintana; and the whole team, which was fantastic from day one to 21. I'm just thankful towards everything the Movistar Team did in this race, not only riders but also the whole staff."

BMC sent me this Giro update:

28 May, 2017, Milan (ITA): The 100th edition of the Giro d'Italia wrapped up with a 29km time trial from Monza to Milan which saw Manuel Quinziato and Joey Rosskopf put in impressive rides to clock the third and fifth-fastest times respectively.

After 20 days of racing, during which time BMC Racing Team won two stages courtesy of Silvan Dillier and Tejay van Garderen, the battle for the General Classification and the last chance to win a stage came down to the final time trial in Milan.

Tejay van Garderen

Tejay van Garderen winning stage 18

In his last Giro d'Italia and last year as a professional rider, Italian National Time trial Champion Quinziato set out early in his tricolour time trial suit and clocked the provisional best time of 33:35.

Only stage winner Jos van Emden (Lotto-NL Jumbo) and Maglia Rosa winner Tom Dumoulin (Team Sunweb) were able to better Quinziato's time and the Italian settled for third place which satisfied his pre-race goal of a top three finish.

Joey Rosskopf showed his strength in a race against the clock by recording the provisional fourth-best time when he crossed the line in front of the famous Duomo in Milan, and eventually finished in fifth place after Dumoulin secured his Maglia Rosa with second place in the time trial.

Stage 18 winner van Garderen was BMC Racing Team's best-placed rider on the General Classification in 20th place.

Manuel Quinziato: "I was waiting for this time trial. It was one of the goals of this Giro d'Italia for me and also one of the reasons I chose to do the Giro this year because it is my last year and it was a chance to wear the Italian National Time Trial jersey. Today, I rode the course like there would be no tomorrow. I'm pretty happy."

"I can say I really enjoyed this Giro d'Italia. Firstly, the weather was unbelievable. I think this was the first Giro d'Italia in the history without a drop of rain. There was a really good atmosphere within the team. We had some good and bad moments. One was Silvan Dillier's victory on stage six and the other was the victory of Tejay van Garderen in my home area. This was really great. With two stage wins, I think we can be happy. I think we planted some good seeds for the next races."

Joey Rosskopf: "It was hot. It was the last day of the Giro d'Italia so I felt pretty motivated to go and push the last drops out of my body and legs. I feel more consistent at this Grand Tour for sure. With a top five result today I am super happy. Other than the time trial, I can see subtle improvements. I feel way more consistent and much fresher in the last week than I did last year, so that's really motivating. That's why I wanted to push it again today."

Maximilian Sciandri, Sports Director: "It's been a long Giro d'Italia. A hard Giro. Like a lot of teams, we've had our good and bad moments. Losing Rohan Dennis who was going to explore his General Classification potential, and Ben Hermans to illness, wasn't great. Tejay van Garderen had some bad moments in his GC pursuit, but then on the other hand we had a great moment with Silvan Dillier's win on stage 6 and Tejay winning a fantastic stage, so we had our ups and downs."

"Today was great. It is Manuel Quinziato's last Giro d'Italia and with the national jersey on his shoulders he did a great race. Joey Rosskopf decided this morning he wanted to check out the course and then quietly did a great time trial. It was a nice way to end the Giro d'Italia."

This came from Cannondale-Drapac:

Davide Formolo regained a spot in the top ten on the Giro d’Italia general classification on the penultimate stage of his home Grand Tour. His final day time trial was quick enough to keep it. Tenth overall and third in the best young rider classification.

“Finally it’s over,” Formolo said with a laugh when he returned to the team hotel following Sunday’s time trial. “It was the goal to be in the top ten, and in end we got it. It was a long Giro with a very hard last week. We had some fun, some efforts, some pain. It’s all normal. I’m very happy.”

“I know it’s overused, but Davide is the most dedicated and hardworking guy I’ve seen in cycling,” said Slipstream Sports CEO Jonathan Vaughters. “He is an on the bike early and often and lights out at 9pm kind of guy. He wanted this top 10 so bad. So bad. So, I’m very happy he could get it.”

Formolo’s general classification result hinged on his showings on three key climbing stages: Mount Etna (stage four), Blockhaus (stage nine) and Stelvio (stage 16). Beyond those stand-out performances, the 24-year-old showed remarkable consistency throughout the month of May.

“I’m very proud of him,” said head sport director Charly Wegelius, who drove car two during the second half of the Giro d’Italia. “He was tenacious. He was insistent, relentless. I think we only got a glimpse of what he can do. I think he can still do a lot better.”

While Cannondale-Drapac started the Giro d’Italia with the intent to target stage victories, the American-registered squad was prepared to support Formolo’s general classification ambitions should the opportunity arise. Formolo left Sardinia, following stage three, in 31st place. He was up to 13th place following the three Sicilian stages and closed out the first week atop Blockhaus in eighth overall.

“The team was amazing,” said Formolo. “I didn’t expect much support in the race. I knew I could be good, but I still don’t know my limits. I’m getting better every race. The team helped me a lot for the whole race, and I’m really proud to have their support.”

As an Italian, Formolo considers the Giro d’Italia the premiere race on the professional cycling calendar, which added extra allure and a bit of extra pressure to perform. He’s relieved as much as he is happy to arrive in Milan in tenth overall.

“Yesterday was tough,” noted Formolo. “I wasn’t feeling good in the stage. When the guys opened the gas, I was really tired. My job was to survive to the finish line. And that’s it. To survive.

“And I survived, so I’m happy,” he added. “We had the stage victory with Pierre last week and now my top ten. It’s been really good. Now it’s time to celebrate and enjoy it all.”

LottoNL-Jumbo's final Tour des Fjords report:

Timo Roosen sprinted to second place in the final stage of the Tour des Fjords to place third overall in Stavanger. Edvald Boasson Hagen won the stage and overall classification.

Timo Roosen

Timo Roosen winning Tour des Fjords stage two

"We had a plan in advance to force echelons today,” Sports Director Sports Director Merijn Zeeman said. “The first time Joker Icopal just started a bit early, when Lars Boom was just behind in the cars and so he missed an important group. At 70 kilometres to go, we forced the group in echelons one more time, leaving 25 riders.''

Prior to the stage, Roosen was 24 seconds behind leader Dries van Gestel and LottoNL-Jumbo's men still wanted to fight for the final victory. "Boasson Hagen and van Gestel were always aware at the front. Roosen went with the first riders over the last climb and in the last kilometres, we decided to ride for his sprint. A second place is therefore a very nice result.”

The Tour of Fjords proved successful for team LottoNL-Jumbo. Roosen won the second stage and the team scored several podiums. “All together we can be very happy with the performance of our men.”

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