Giro d'Italia 2016

May 6-29, Apeldoorn, Italy, Road - WorldTour

Complete Live Report

Live commentary by:
Patrick Fletcher

Hello and welcome to Cyclingnews' live coverage of stage 16 of the Giro d'Italia, a 132km stage from Bressanone to Andalo, featuring some significant climbs. 

 

Giro d'Italia race hub on Cyclingnews

Stage 15: Kruijswijk extends lead as Foliforov wins uphill time trial

Gallery: Steven Kruijswijk's celeste and pink Bianchi

Follow the Giro with our Tour Tracker app

 

  1. 13:00:16 CEST

    Hello, have you missed us? We're back after the third and final rest day for full live coverage of stage 16 of the Giro d'Italia. A short one today, but with plenty of climbing - a definite GC day. 

  2. 13:05:11 CEST

    Here's the stage profile

     

     

     

  3. 13:09:21 CEST

    • Climb

    As you can see, just 132 kilometres but there are two big climbs on the menu, along with a short one just shy of the finish. The two biggies are listed as second-category but don’t be fooled; the Passo della Mendolo is turtuously long at 15km (average 6.5%), while the 10km Fai della Paganella has an average of 7.4% with ramps of 15%.

     

    Indeed, Alejandro Valverde expressed his bemusement that they have not been given first-category status

     

  4. 13:14:33 CEST

    The team buses have pulled up in Bressanone and riders are currently signing on. They'll be rolling out at around 13.30 local time, and racing proper will begin some 10 minutes later. 

     

  5. 13:18:27 CEST

    After a highly impressive weekend, LottoNL-Jumbo's Steven Kruijswijk leads the Giro, and by a considerable margin. Here's how the general classification stands.

     

    1 Steven Kruijswijk (Ned) Team LottoNl-Jumbo 60:41:22
    2 Esteban Chaves (Col) Orica-GreenEdge 0:02:12
    3 Vincenzo Nibali (Ita) Astana Pro Team 0:02:51
    4 Alejandro Valverde (Spa) Movistar Team 0:03:29
    5 Rafal Majka (Pol) Tinkoff Team 0:04:38
    6 Ilnur Zakarin (Rus) Team Katusha 0:04:40
    7 Andrey Amador (CRc) Movistar Team 0:05:27
    8 Bob Jungels (Lux) Etixx - Quick-Step 0:07:14
    9 Kanstantsin Siutsou (Blr) Dimension Data 0:07:37
    10 Jakob Fuglsang (Den) Astana Pro Team 0:07:55
    11 Domenico Pozzovivo (Ita) AG2R La Mondiale 0:08:12
    12 Rigoberto Uran (Col) Cannondale Pro Cycling 0:08:19

     

  6. 13:24:52 CEST

    Yesterday we took a look at the GC complexion after two weeks of racing. You can read that feature here:

     

    Giro d'Italia: Analysing the GC contenders after week two

     

  7. 13:31:20 CEST

    Here we go then - here comes the roll out.

     

  8. 13:36:13 CEST

    A couple of tweets there to show the difficulty/importance of this stage, despite its roadbook billing of just 3 out of 5 stars. 

     

    Our European editor Stephen Farrand, who has covered every Giro since 1994, has written this stage preview:

     

    Preview: Giro d’Italia resumes with short but very sharp stage 16 to Andalo

     

  9. 13:38:05 CEST

    Here's today's start location

     

     

  10. 13:48:28 CEST

    A reminder of our jersey wearers today:

     

    Pink (overall): Steven Kruijswijk (LottoNL-Jumbo)

    Blue (mountains): Damiano Cunego (Nippo-Vini Fantini)

    Red (points): Giacomo Nizzolo (Trek-Segafredo)

    White (young riders): Bob Jungels (Etixx-QuickStep)

     

  11. 13:56:49 CEST

    It could be a fight to get into the breakaway today and no moves have been allowed to go clear in the opening kilometres. Cunego is sure to be interested in getting involved with the KOM points on offer today.

     

  12. 14:01:09 CEST

    With Kruijswijk enjoying such a buffer at the top of the standings, you have to expect aggression from Astana, and Movistar too, who both have greater strength in depth in the mountains than LottoNL. It's not what Kruijswijk wants to see, but it's probably what most spectators are hoping for. 

     

  13. 14:05:09 CEST

    A few riders have skipped off the front, but they're not being given much freedom yet. 

     

  14. 14:08:47 CEST

    Mirco Maestri, Daniel Oss, Simon Clarke, Eugert Zhupa and Pavel Brutt are among the aggressors, but they're not going to get away here as the pace in the peloton remains high. 

     

  15. 14:14:06 CEST

    More riders trying their luck now and the peloton is being pulled along by Bardiani. That must mean Maestri missed the latest move. 

     

  16. 102km remaining from 132km

    14:17:17 CEST

    After 30km this breakaway group has a lead of around 30 seconds. They've slowly but surely gained a small lead, but will they be let fully off the leash?

     

  17. 14:26:01 CEST

    The riders in this escape group are: Mirco Maestri (Bardiani-CSF), Daniel Oss and Joey Rosskopf (BMC), Simon Clarke (Cannondale), Matteo Trentin (Etixx-QuickStep), Olivier Le Gac (FDJ), Pim Ligthart (Lotto Soudal), Pavel Brutt (Tinkoff) and Marco Coledan (Trek-Segafredo).

     

  18. 14:32:13 CEST

    We've just come through the only intermediate sprint point and it's Coledan who takes maximum points, followed by Trentin and Oss.

  19. 14:34:56 CEST

    This breakaway group has not been allowed to go clear. They still only have around half a minute, and we'll soon be climbing. 

     

  20. 14:36:27 CEST

    The peloton makes the catch and it's all back together. 

  21. 14:40:33 CEST

    Clarke goes again, but he's soon reeled back in. Lots more small attacks here but still nothing is sticking. 

     

  22. 14:42:05 CEST

    We're about to start the first climb of the day, the Passo della Mendola. This is what it looks like. 

     

     

  23. 14:42:34 CEST

    Movistar take it up on the front as the gradients begin to ramp up. 

     

  24. 14:43:24 CEST

    It's all together but Dimension Data's Igor Anton puts in the first attack on this climb. 

  25. 14:44:13 CEST

    Riders are already getting shelled out the back of the peloton. After a fast start, this climb is going to take its toll, especially with Movistar and Astana amassed near the front. 

     

  26. 14:45:11 CEST

    Valverde rides up alongside Nibali and the pair exchange words. Plans being laid for an assault on Kruijswijk's race lead?

     

  27. 14:50:32 CEST

    54 kilometres covered in the first hour of racing. There was a slight downhill all the way to the foot of this climb, but that's rapid. 

     

  28. 14:51:08 CEST

    Movistar are absolutely drilling this. They're well and truly piling the pressure on here.

     

  29. 14:51:39 CEST

    Igor Anton is brought back but goes again. David Lopez now has a dig.

     

  30. 14:52:13 CEST

    Kruijswijk is already down to one teammate at the head of the peloton. There may be more towards the back but that could be worrying. 

     

  31. 14:52:21 CEST

    Zakarin attacks!

     

  32. 14:53:02 CEST

    Zakarin is 6th on GC and is a big danger. How will the others react to this one?

     

  33. 14:53:46 CEST

    Nibali's Astana teammate Tanel Kangert attacks now and joins Zakarin. 

     

  34. 14:54:32 CEST

    Gianluca Brambilla goes now, followed by Lopez. Cunego is interested here, and now Amador is up at the front. It's all happening on this climb!

     

  35. 14:54:53 CEST

    Valverde attacks now!

     

  36. 14:55:35 CEST

    Ulissi goes with Valverde. There's no gap but it strings out the front of the bunch. 

     

  37. 14:56:42 CEST

    Lopez joins Zakarin and Kangert at the head of the race. Valverde drops away as Ulissi keeps chasing.

     

  38. 14:57:27 CEST

    No panic just yet for Kruijswijk, who has two teammates now setting a steady pace on the front of the bunch. This is going to be a real test of his mettle. 

  39. 14:58:30 CEST

    Zakarin drops back to the peloton now. 

     

  40. 14:59:21 CEST

    Cunego attacks now, as does Visconti, two riders from Tinkoff, and a couple of others. 

  41. 14:59:54 CEST

    Mechanical problem for Nibali, who has to change bikes with a teammate. 

     

  42. 15:00:57 CEST

    No real worries for Nibali, who makes his way back up through the bunch very quickly indeed. It's another chain/derailleur issue for the Italian - as he had in the time trial on Sunday.

  43. 15:01:39 CEST

    Jungels attacks now and Kruijswijk follows. Zakarin also alive to this. Valverde not far back. Nibali makes it back up in time to react. 

     

  44. 15:02:02 CEST

    Gazprom's Sergiy Firsanov attacks on his own now as the GC men mark each other. 

     

  45. 15:02:27 CEST

    Rigoberto Uran attacks now! Is there anyone who hasn't attacked yet?!

     

  46. 15:02:48 CEST

    Kruijswijk follow, Nibali goes with it too, as does Valverde. 

     

  47. 15:03:30 CEST

    As the move gets pegged back and they ease up slightly, Jungels comes back up to the group and immediately leaves them behind. 

     

  48. 15:04:16 CEST

    It looks like Esteban Chaves is there in the bunch not too far back but he hasn't been a prominent presence here in what has been a really hectic start to this stage. 

  49. 15:04:58 CEST

    Jungels gets a big gap and makes his way up to the leaders along with Firsanov. 

     

  50. 15:05:47 CEST

    More attacks from the bunch now, but this time from breakaway hopefuls, including Riccardo Zoidl and Joe Dombrowski. Kruijswijk happy to watch them go. 

     

  51. 15:07:01 CEST

    Pozzovivo ups the pace at the front of the bunch and most of those attackers are pegged back before the GC men ease up once more. Nibali has teammates but is right on the wheel of Kruijswijk at the moment. 

     

  52. 15:09:01 CEST

    Zakarin on the offensive once more as Kruijswijk is having a real job on his hands to try and keep some semblance of control amid this chaos. He's isolated but doing a good job so far. 

     

  53. 15:09:17 CEST

    Cannondale are up there with plenty of numbers.

     

  54. 15:09:37 CEST

    Zakarin with a big attack now. Kruijswijk with a really strong response. 

     

  55. 15:10:03 CEST

    Nibali and Valverde go with this move. There's a gap back to the bunch with Chaves in. 

     

  56. 15:11:49 CEST

    Poor Damiano Cunego. Every time he thinks it's settled down and it's safe to attack to get up to the break in search of those KOM points, there are more attacks from the GC men and his work is immediately undone. 

     

  57. 15:12:14 CEST

    Dombrowski bridges to the leaders. Great effort from the young American

     

  58. 15:12:30 CEST

    Nibali goes!

     

  59. 15:13:08 CEST

    The Italian comes from behind and catches the others off guard. Kruijswijk forced to chase, Valverde on the wheel of the pink jersey. Nibali has a gap.

     

  60. 15:13:38 CEST

    The break crest the climb and it's Lopez who takes maximum KOM points, followed by Firsanov.

     

  61. 15:14:19 CEST

    Nibali is pegged back, but where is Chaves? He seems to be in the main bunch with Majka and Uran. 

     

  62. 15:18:37 CEST

    We're heading downhill now and this Nibali group is really keen to kick on here. 

     

  63. 15:20:51 CEST

    The Nibali/Kruijswijk group has caught the leaders on this descent. It's not a very technical one, with long straights and a chance to get into those aero tucks. 

     

  64. 15:23:18 CEST

    Chaves and Majka are over half a minute behind here. 

     

  65. 15:25:31 CEST

    Jungels gets out of the saddle on this descent and really turns that biggest gear as he can do so well. He's really pushing on here. 

     

  66. 15:31:13 CEST

    Nibali is the only man with a teammate in this front group. They've not yet shaken the race leader but with Chaves and Majka distanced, he, Valverde, and Zakarin will be really keen to keep the pace high. 

     

  67. 15:32:30 CEST

    Orica-GreenEdge lead the chase group for Chaves. He must have been suffering on that climb as he did not respond to any of the attacks. Now he's been forced into a frantic chase and it's not a battle he's winning, as the gap now stands at 40 seconds. 

     

  68. 15:34:10 CEST

    Kruijswijk gives Valverde a pat on the back - i'm not sure what he said to Spaniard. In any case, this front group is strung out into one long line and everyone seems to be happy to come through and do their turns. 

     

  69. 15:35:45 CEST

    There's a short little climb coming up at the town of Claes that will break up the downhill. Will it break up the front group?

     

  70. 15:37:08 CEST

    Chaves has dropped back to the team car to get a bottle. That's not where he needs to be right now.

     

  71. 45km remaining from 132km

    15:37:56 CEST

    Just 45 kilometres left of this stage - what a whirlwind it has been. 

     

  72. 15:41:04 CEST

    Riders are getting shelled out the back of the chase group as Orica put their big men on the front. The gap has come down slightly to below the 30-second mark. 

     

  73. 15:45:44 CEST

    As the road kicks up again, the chase loses a bit of ground - around 10 seconds. Tangert driving the lead group. 

     

  74. 15:46:40 CEST

    As can be expected the GC men are keen to sprint for the bonus seconds on offer at the intermediate sprint point at the top of this little climb. Diego Ulissi takes the maximum of three, with Valverde gaining two and Nibali one. 

  75. 15:49:49 CEST

    Chaves has got just one teammate with him. The Colombian is sat second wheel with a string of Cannondale riders behind. They've got Dombrowski up front and maybe their playing for a stage win rather than the overall classification with Uran. 

  76. 15:51:08 CEST

    Dombrowski is getting dropped from this group though and he doesn't look too happy. 

     

  77. 15:52:49 CEST

    Orica-GreenEdge has peeled off the front and now it is Tinkoff who look to set things up. The gap has been bouncing between 30-40 seconds for some time. 

     

  78. 28km remaining from 132km

    15:55:40 CEST

    Dombrowski has been caught by the chasing group and he slots into the Cannondale train. Perhaps he was called back to help with this chase because they're not making any inroads into the leaders at the moment. 

     

  79. 15:56:12 CEST

    Cannondale are now working on the front with Orica-GreenEdge in the wheel. 

     

  80. 15:58:47 CEST

    • Cannondale 2016

    Was Dombrowski dropped or was he called back? Cannondale immediately appeared at the front of the chase group, which might suggest the latter, but then the American went straight to the very back of the group. Either way, he wasn't best pleased, and bashed his bars in frustration. 

  81. 15:59:27 CEST

    Kruijswijk now gives Zakarin a pat on the back. Why is he patting everyone on the back?!

     

  82. 16:03:58 CEST

    Situation

     

    Lead group: Kruijswijk, Nibali, Valverde, Zakarin, Jungels, Ulissi, Kangert, Lopez, Firsanov

    |

    45 seconds

    |

    Chasing bunch inc Chaves, Majka, Uran, Amador

     

  83. 16:05:54 CEST

    Here we go then, onto the second major climb of the day. This is what it looks like:

     

     

  84. 16:06:58 CEST

    Kangert leads the race onto the climb. What a job he has done today. He'll surely be teeing Nibali up for an attack somewhere on this climb.

     

  85. 16:07:42 CEST

    Formolo appears at the front of the chase group, and there's Chaves just behind him. Pozzovivo, Majka, Uran all present. Can they close this gap?

     

  86. 16:09:15 CEST

    It's Chaves who takes it up now, Pozzovivo on his wheel, then Majka and Uran. The gap comes down to 15 seconds here. Chaves is closing this. 

     

  87. 16:09:42 CEST

    Kangert peels off - his work done for the day - and he's soon caught by the Chaves group. 

     

  88. 16:10:46 CEST

    Lopez digs. That's not a concern for Kruijswijk but it is when Zakarin goes. The pink jersey is quick to react and goes with the Katusha man. No panic from Nibali, who slowly claws his way back.

     

  89. 16:11:31 CEST

    Kruijswijk is looking unshakeable here. He's been alive to pretty much every attack so far on this stage - and we've had plenty. 

  90. 16:12:16 CEST

    Uran dropped from the Chaves group which now contains just three riders. 20 seconds is the gap.

     

  91. 16:16:37 CEST

    Valverde attacks now! No surprise to see Kruijswijk right on his wheel. Zakarin bridges across and Nibali once again slowly claws his way back. 

     

  92. 16:17:01 CEST

    Zakarin counters now. This is going to put Nibali in difficulty.

     

  93. 16:17:50 CEST

    Nibali is dropped. He pulls over onto Firsanov's wheel but he didn't have a response to that small flurry of attacks. Will that trio push on?

     

  94. 16:18:46 CEST

    Nibali has his head over his bars, the effort is really taking its toll. Zakarin smells blood and pushes on. 

     

  95. 16:19:53 CEST

    Nibali is now with Jungels, Lopez and Firsanov. The gap is already 17 seconds. More woe for the Italian in this Giro. 

  96. 16:21:21 CEST

    The Chaves group, still led by the Colombian himself, makes its way up to the Nibali group. 

     

  97. 16:22:40 CEST

    Valverde comes through to the front now to give Zakarin a bit of a break. The gap continues to grow and it looks like they're all happy to be putting time into Nibali. 

     

  98. 16:24:32 CEST

    Zakarin, Kruijswijk and Valverde lead the race

     

    Nibali, Chaves, Majka, Jungels et al at 23 seconds

  99. 16:26:08 CEST

    Jungels is grinding his way up this climb and Nibali quite frankly looks grateful to be on his wheel. The gap grows out to nearly 40 seconds and we're just a couple of kilometres from the summit of this climb. 

     

  100. 16:27:05 CEST

    • Pink Jersey

    Kruijswijk now comes through for a turn. His closest rivals at the start of the day were Chaves at 2:12 and Nibali at 2:51, and he's distancing them both.

     

  101. 16:28:19 CEST

    Nibali comes off Jungels' wheel and injects some pace, pegging the leaders back by around 10 seconds. 

     

  102. 16:30:29 CEST

    Chaves goes now. We're approaching the steeper ramps of this climb towards its summit, and the Colombian ups the pace. He drags the others with him but it eats into the lead of the trio up the road. 

     

  103. 10km remaining from 132km

    16:31:28 CEST

    10km to go as the cars pass through, meaning the gap between the two groups is very narrow indeed. 

     

  104. 16:32:16 CEST

    Double-digit gradients for the leaders now and it's Kruijswijk who takes it up. He looks strong. In the group behind it's no surprise to see Chaves out of the saddle and giving it everything. 

     

  105. 16:32:29 CEST

    Nibali is dropped on that steep section.

     

  106. 16:33:20 CEST

    Pozzovivo also in trouble. Chaves leads the chase group over the summit and now begins a frantic descent to bring this race back together. 

  107. 16:34:54 CEST

    Chaves and Majka exchange words and in all likelihood agree to work together and keep the pressure firmly on Nibali, caught out behind. 25 seconds is the gap now to the front of the race as Valverde throws himself through some of these bends. 

     

  108. 16:35:52 CEST

    This is how the final kilometres look. There's a third-category climb with some steep gradients.

     

     

  109. 6km remaining from 132km

    16:37:29 CEST

    Jungels hits the front of the chase as the road flattens out. That's good news for Chaves and Majka. 

     

  110. 5km remaining from 132km

    16:38:14 CEST

    5km to go and the Chaves chase group is 30 seconds behind the leading trio. Meanwhile Nibali is a further 10 seconds back.

     

  111. 16:39:09 CEST

    Who's going to take the stage win? It looks like the winner will be one of Valverde, Zakarin, or Kruijswijk.

  112. 16:40:22 CEST

    Remember, there are bonus seconds at the finish of 10 seconds, 6 seconds, and 4 seconds, for 1st, 2nd, and 3rd respectively. They will be keenly contested. 

  113. 3.5km remaining from 132km

    16:40:51 CEST

    Nibali is still slipping back and now finds himself a minute behind the leaders. 

     

  114. 16:41:53 CEST

    Chaves takes it up in the chase behind but he's doing little to limit the damage. The gap is still just under 30 seconds. 

     

  115. 2.8km remaining from 132km

    16:43:17 CEST

    Chaves attacks now in a desperate bid to limit his losses. Meanwhile Zakarin, Kruijswijk and Valverde are still ticking along very nicely indeed. 

     

  116. 16:43:56 CEST

    Zakarin is the man doing the lion's share of the work at the head of the race, and the gap goes out to 40 seconds. 

     

  117. 16:44:10 CEST

    Majka is dropped from the chase group, as is Ulissi. 

     

  118. 1.5km remaining from 132km

    16:45:23 CEST

    Jungels struggles on the steepest section but gets himself back in contact as the road levels out once more. 

     

  119. 16:45:56 CEST

    Flamme rouge now for the three leaders. Thoughts will soon turn to the stage win. 

     

  120. 16:46:18 CEST

    Zakarin leads them into the home straight, Valverde on the wheel, perfectly positioned. 

  121. 16:46:37 CEST

    Valverde wins stage 16 of the Giro d'Italia

     

  122. 16:47:07 CEST

    What a sprint by the Spaniard, as Kruijswijk takes second just behind but Zakarin is gapped slightly. 

     

  123. 16:47:42 CEST

    Jungels, Lopez, and Firsanov come home next, while Chaves comes home 41 seconds down, followed a few seconds later by Majka. 

     

  124. 16:48:35 CEST

    Nibali, a sorry sight, comes home with Pozzovivo, and they're 1:46 down. That's another huge blow for the 2013 Giro champion.

     

  125. 16:51:15 CEST

    So, by my calculations, Chaves hangs onto second place but Valverde has jumped above Nibali and into third, now hot on the heels of the Colombian. Kruijswijk opens up his advantage at the head of the standings and makes another assured and impressive step towards Turin.

     

  126. 16:52:48 CEST

    Valverde takes his first ever Giro d'Italia stage win

     

     

  127. 16:54:33 CEST

    Top 10

     

    1 Alejandro Valverde (Spa) Movistar Team 2:58:54
    2 Steven Kruijswijk (Ned) Team LottoNl-Jumbo
    3 Ilnur Zakarin (Rus) Team Katusha 0:00:08
    4 Diego Ulissi (Ita) Lampre - Merida 0:00:37
    5 Bob Jungels (Lux) Etixx - Quick-Step
    6 David Lopez Garcia (Spa) Team Sky 0:00:38
    7 Sergey Firsanov (Rus) Gazprom-Rusvelo
    8 Esteban Chaves (Col) Orica-GreenEdge 0:00:42
    9 Rafal Majka (Pol) Tinkoff Team 0:00:50
    10 Domenico Pozzovivo (Ita) AG2R La Mondiale 0:01:47

     

  128. 16:57:20 CEST

    So Zakarin lost eight seconds in 250 metres as Valverde opened up his sprint. That shows you the strength of the Spaniard, who seems to have recovered remarkably from Saturday's travails, but it's worth noting that Zakarin probably did the most work of that leading trio. 

     

  129. 16:57:35 CEST

    General classification after stage 16

    1 Steven Kruijswijk (Ned) Team LottoNl-Jumbo 63:40:10
    2 Esteban Chaves (Col) Orica-GreenEdge 0:03:00
    3 Alejandro Valverde (Spa) Movistar Team 0:03:23
    4 Vincenzo Nibali (Ita) Astana Pro Team 0:04:43
    5 Ilnur Zakarin (Rus) Team Katusha 0:04:50
    6 Rafal Majka (Pol) Tinkoff Team 0:05:34
    7 Bob Jungels (Lux) Etixx - Quick-Step 0:07:57
    8 Andrey Amador (CRc) Movistar Team 0:06:53
    9 Domenico Pozzovivo (Ita) AG2R La Mondiale 0:10:05
    10 Kanstantsin Siutsou (Blr) Dimension Data 0:11:03

     

  130. 16:59:55 CEST

    Is that the nail in the coffin of Nibali's Giro d'Italia?

     

    He's nearly five minutes down on the race lead now, and that's a big chunk of time to recoup for a rider at the top of his game, never mind one who is clearly well below his best and who was dropped by the likes of Bob Jungels and David Lopez on that final climb. 

  131. 17:05:23 CEST

    The average speed for today's stage was 44km/h. Considering this was a mountain stage and the fastest time schedule anticipated by the organisers was 39km/h, that's crazy. Certainly crazing racing that we were treated to today. 

     

  132. 17:12:09 CEST

    It's worth remembering that Chaves was nowhere to be seen for the first half of this stage, which featured an insane amount action on the Passo della Mendola. It looked worrying for the Colombian but he showed himself to be strong in the closing stages as he took the initiative in the chase and limited his losses to Kruijswijk, Valverde, and Zakarin. Still, losses they were, and should they have been avoided by being more prudent in the early stages?

  133. 17:14:23 CEST

    One rider who once again failed to impress today was Rafal Majka, who drops out of the top five. Zakarin now occupies that fifth place and looks good to stay there all the way to Turin, if not improve on it with a flailing Nibali just seven seconds ahead. 

     

  134. 17:18:58 CEST

    And what to say about Kruijswijk? 

     

    The Dutchman just looks so strong. He was alive to pretty much every attack today (and there were plenty) and, on the evidence of the past three stages, it's difficult to see the pink jersey being wrestled from his shoulders. 

     

  135. 17:19:59 CEST

     

  136. 17:22:58 CEST

    The gruppetto today rolled in some 17 minutes after Valverde. A horrible day for them. 

     

  137. 17:32:48 CEST

    Finish line shot

     

     

  138. 17:47:22 CEST

    Valverde speaks to TV after his win

     

    "Today we started out with the mentality of going all out to get the victory. We got it and on top of that we took time on some rivals. The leader is very strong but we must be happy," he said.

     

    "I'm going to remain calm in what remains of this Giro, as I have done up to this point, and keep enjoying it. I'm loving being here."

     

    Asked if he saw any weakness in Kruijswijk today that might be exploitable in the coming days, the reply was simple and to the point: "No."

     

  139. 17:51:51 CEST

    Here's our stage report, complete with full results and a photo gallery.

     

    Giro d'Italia: Valverde wins intense stage to Andalo

     

     

  140. 17:53:41 CEST

    • Pink Jersey

    "Second yet again!" says Kruijswijk, not that he really has much cause for complaint. 

     

    "I wanted to give my team a win but it's an ideal situation for the maglia rosa as I'm now three minutes ahead of Esteban Chaves and the others. I was feeling really good so I had to make the best of this short but really hard stage. I had to follow Nibali when he attacked early in the stage. I didn't expect so much action the day after the rest day."

     

  141. 17:59:00 CEST

    Fancy re-living all that action (who wouldn't)?

     

    Giro d'Italia stage 16 highlights video

  142. 18:12:29 CEST

    That's it from us for today. Again, what a stage!!

     

    We'll be back again tomorrow morning for full live coverage of stage 17 and we hope you'll join us again. 

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