Team Gerolsteiner had good news from the Giro della Provincia di Grosseto on Friday. It not only had two riders finishing in the lead group, all of the riders were able to ride their original bikes. Five of the riders from the German team flew into Italy from Mallorca, but their bikes and baggage didn't make the connecting flight from Madrid to Pisa. The equipment wasn't expected to arrive until mid-day Friday, but it came in late Thursday evening. Team mechanics put in some extra hours to pick the bikes up and assemble them in time for Friday's opening stage of the new race.
The peloton split with about 30 km to go in the stage, with 36 riders gaining a 44-second advantage which they held to the end. This leading group contained Gerolsteiner team captain Davide Rebellin and his team-mate Andrea Moletta, who finished seventh on the day. The team had actually been hoping to set up a sprint for Robert Förster, but he didn't make the split. Directeur sportif Christian Henn described the split, saying "everything fell apart, but we could react. Andrea and Davide showed their class and were in the front."
Förster was not able to participate in the final sprint, but at least he was able to complete the stage on his own bike.