Giro d'Italia 2010

May 8-30, 2010, Amsterdam, Italy, Road - GT

Complete Live Report

Live commentary by:
Susan Westemeyer

After a well-deserved rest day, the Giro d'Italia starts up again, and with a real doozey of a stage. Today the riders face a mountain time trial, only 12.9km, but those are tough ones. After climbing to the Passo Furcia, they take off on dirt road over sections of up to 24 percent gradient. Most of the riders will simply be trying to survive today on the Plan de Corones.

  1. 12:37:06 CEST

    Hello and welcome back to the Giro! The final week gets tough from the get-go today, as the riders will agonizingly grind their way up to the Passo Furcia and then the Plan de Corones. It will undoubtedly be a lot more fun for those of us watching than it will be for them.

  2. 12:43:32 CEST

    The first batch of riders has already finished, and the last to go is the one with the best time: Damien Monier of Cofidis. He is currently leading with a time of 44:15.

  3. 12:45:29 CEST

    The peloton has been divided into three groups, and as we said, the first group is finished. After an hour-and-a-half break, the next group is ready to start soon. Kalle Kriit, also of Cofidis, will be the first at 12:50.

  4. 12:49:13 CEST

    Good news! The sun is shining, and the temperature at the top is about 10° Celsius.

  5. 12:54:41 CEST

    The “Time trial to the clouds” is what the CN preview called this stage.

    Plenty of riders will have spent a nervy rest day contemplating this extraordinary mountain time trial. It starts easy enough, ramps up towards the Passo Furcia, then takes off on a hard-packed dirt road towards the summit. Sections of 20 and 24 per cent slow riders to walking pace and ensure the massive crowds can clearly see the toll it takes on them.

  6. 13:05:52 CEST

    Back in 2008, 152 riders started the stage. Six were eliminated for being out-of-time: Ravis Belohvosciks, Mathew Hayman, Paolo Bossoni, Christopher Sutton, Lander Aperribay, and Thomas Fothen. The last time to make the cut was plus 10:19, and the first time to be cut was plus 10:92.

    Hayman and Sutton are the only two of that batch who are in the race this year. No doubt they will hope to not repeat their performances of two years ago.

  7. 13:11:09 CEST

    Cyclingnews' Stephen Farrand tells us that the time limit is 25 percent of the winner's time, which is actually a very generous limit.

  8. 13:19:25 CEST

    The winning time in 2008 was 40:26. Assuming the time today is a flat 40:00 (because that is the easiest number of us to work with), we add 25 percent or ten minutes to that for the time limit. And that means that anyone over 50 minutes would have problems.

    We already have a few riders who will have to worry about their continued participation in the Giro, if it works out that way:

    51 REDA Francesco ITA QST 50:46 6:31
    52 FOTHEN Markus GER MRM 50:57 6:42
    53 CAPELLI Ermanno ITA FOT 52:14 7:59

  9. 13:29:02 CEST

    It will be a while before  Kriit comes in to the finish, but we will of course let you know when he does.

  10. 13:36:04 CEST

    Gilberto Simoni has just put in a best time at the intermediate time check.   Can he hold it until the end?

  11. 13:48:50 CEST

    The Giro went up here two years ago, on a memorable day. The winning time was 40.26 – how will that compare to today's time?

  12. 13:52:16 CEST

    All of the second group has taken to the road now, and the first have even arrived at the top. Simoni put in a good time, but still finished only second, 12 seconds behind Monier.

  13. 13:57:16 CEST

    The third and final batch of riders will start at 15:10, with Vasil Kiryienka of Caisse d'Epargne kicking things off.

  14. 14:03:40 CEST

    We won't have a repeat of the top five finishers from 2008 here today, that's for sure. Let's take a look at them:

    1 Franco Pellizotti – currently suspended and awaiting a hearing on doping charges under the biological passport programme
    2 Emanuele Sella – currently serving a two-year suspension for EPO-CERA
    3 Gilberto Simoni – riding the race for Lampre, currently 92nd, 2:02.23 down
    4 Alberto Contador – not riding the race this year
    5 Riccardo Riccò – not invited

  15. 14:10:00 CEST

    Here are some details for today's stage:

    Distance: 12.9km
    Vertical climb: 1,080m
    Highest point: 2,273m
    Terrain: High mountain
    Category: Individual Time Trial

  16. 14:15:54 CEST

    This won't be the riders' first experience with non-paved roads in this Giro. Who can possibly have forgotten the infamous “mud battle” of stage seven? Cadel Evans was the winner then, with Alexandre Vinokourov moving into the pink jersey.

    At least the weather is better today!

  17. 14:19:01 CEST

    Meanwhile, we have some changes at the top of the leaderboard. Both David Moncoutie (Cofidis) and Sylvester Szmyd have bettered Monier. Szmyd is currently leading with a time of 43:40.

  18. 14:27:09 CEST

    This is a very narrow road, right? And things are hard enough for the riders making their way up, without having to look out for finished riders making their way down, right? How to solve this problem?

    Easy! This is a ski area. The riders who have finished simply jump on the ski lift and are transported back to the bottom and the team bus.

  19. 14:38:28 CEST

    All of the second group of riders has now arrived at the top.  The next rider doesn't go off for another 30 minutes, so we will take a short break until then.

  20. 15:10:11 CEST

    And here we are back again, just in time to kick off the final group of riders.

  21. 15:15:15 CEST

    We have a beautiful blue sky and lots of spectators today.

  22. 15:18:46 CEST

    We now see Dan Martin of Garmin-Transitions zipping along.  He only started 7 minutes ago, so he hasn't gotten to the fun part of the course yet.

  23. 15:21:17 CEST

    Filippo Pozzato crosses himself before he takes off. 

  24. 15:23:33 CEST

    Things are nice and green at the bottom of the course, but up top we see some funny white stuff --- isn't winter over yet?

  25. 15:27:13 CEST

    The Giro was supposed to come up here on a regular stage in 2006, but it was snowed out.  No doubt a number of riders were hoping for that same fate today.  No such luck.

  26. 15:28:12 CEST

    Pozzato passes under the 10km marker.

  27. 15:29:37 CEST

    Martin is still working his way up, looking pretty good so far.  No idea what his time is, though.

  28. 15:32:56 CEST

    There actually are a few flat – or flattish – metres hiding on the course today, but they are far and few between.

  29. 15:36:44 CEST

    Martin is doing quite well, he is only one second down at the intermediate time check.

  30. 15:38:35 CEST

    Martin has now moved to the not so fun section.  Things are getting narrower and steeper -- and we hate to tell him, but it just gets worse.

  31. 15:39:31 CEST

    Pieter Weening of Rabobank is the next to go.

  32. 15:40:59 CEST

    The dirt road surface where Martin is now looks fairly rough.

  33. 15:42:29 CEST

    Here's what HTC-Columbia DS Tristan Hoffman had to say about the rest day and today's very definitely not rest day:  The riders had a bit of time to relax and rebuild their energy. Marco Pinotti went out to see the steep Time Trial climb we have tomorrow and the rest of the team did a 30km ride before massage a rest time in the afternoon. The course is a bit too steep for our sprinters to challenge at the front so Pinotti will be hoping to keep near the front in the general classification whilst the majority of the team will just survive the distance.

  34. 15:43:12 CEST

    Michael Barry is 30th at the intermediate time check, and has caught a rider in front of him.

  35. 15:43:36 CEST

    Bradley Wiggins is on the course now, in his white national champion's kit.

  36. 15:44:55 CEST

    No spectators for Martin at the moment.  And we hope he stays on the road, there's a lot of nothing off to the left side.

  37. 15:45:32 CEST

    Xavier Tondo of Cervelo takes off.  He had a tough day on Sunday.

  38. 15:45:36 CEST

    Xavier Tondo of Cervelo takes off.  He had a tough day on Sunday.

  39. 15:47:18 CEST

    Martin keeps grinding his way up....

  40. 15:49:06 CEST

    Martin doesn't look as fresh as he did earlier, we wonder why not....

  41. 15:50:57 CEST

    Last km for Martin.

  42. 15:54:17 CEST

    Martin approaches the top at last.

  43. 15:55:38 CEST

    Will the young Irishman set a new best time?  His chances look good.

  44. 15:57:19 CEST

    No.  That last km is a lot longer and harder than it looks.  He finishes in second place so far, 20 seconds behind Szmyd.

  45. 15:59:47 CEST

    Martin smiles exhaustedly, happy to have done so well, and to have made it there at all.

  46. 16:02:23 CEST

    Cervelo's Wyss is the next to finish, currently in 14th place.

  47. 16:03:35 CEST

    Marco Pinotti of HTC-Columbia is the next to go.  

    He did a test ride here yesterday, and twittered:  did a reckon on TT coursen PLANDECORONES: It's breathless, so hard and beautiful scenery.

  48. 16:05:48 CEST

    The riders are leaving at three-minute intervals now, with Damiano Cunego the next to roll down the ramp.

  49. 16:07:11 CEST

    Wiggins is 57th at the intermediate time check, over two minutes down.

  50. 16:08:19 CEST

    Quick Step's Samoilau is putting in an excellent ride and may well bring in a best time.

  51. 16:10:37 CEST

    LInus Gerdemann of Milram is underway -- only eight riders left to go.

  52. 16:11:39 CEST

    And Samoilau does indeed take the best time!  He came in one second faster thatn Johan Tschoop, who somehow sneaked by us.....

  53. 16:13:21 CEST

    World champion Cadel Evans gave the course a spin yesterday, too, and twittered:  Rest day at the #Giro. Had a nice quiet ride on Plan Di
    corones; the scenery is spectacular. #muchappreciatedsolitude

  54. 16:14:26 CEST

    Garzelli speeds right on past Weening, who started two minutes ahead of the Italian.

  55. 16:15:29 CEST

    Vincenzo NIbali is underway, and Alexandre Vinokourov will be the next to go.  Will he go for the win today?

  56. 16:19:02 CEST

    Rigoberto Uran of Caisse d'Epargne is our new leader with a time of 43:04.

  57. 16:20:50 CEST

    Petrov is now second, ten seconds behind Uran.

  58. 16:21:10 CEST

    Garzelli is looking good -- a new best time?

  59. 16:22:34 CEST

    And what a new best time!  41.28, a whole minute and a half faster!

  60. 16:23:35 CEST

    Evans takes off! 

  61. 16:26:51 CEST

    Gadret is now second, 54 seconds behind Garzelli.

  62. 16:28:41 CEST

    How does Carlos Sastre of Cervelo TestTeam think things have gone so far? “It's been  up and down from the start. It started with two crashes and different problems in important moments. I lost about 10 minutes right from the start. Then the stage to L'Aquila changed everything. I got into the breakaway and it gave me hope again in this Giro. Now I've lost time in these first two stages in the Dolomites, but I have survived. The GC is quite open. My back is feeling better and my condition is coming up. I'm confident for all possibilities”

  63. 16:31:41 CEST

    The Maglia Rosa is underway! David Arroyo is the last rider to take off today.

  64. 16:33:14 CEST

    Pat McQuaid has said it was mistake for the UCI to accept the cash donation from Lance Armstrong.  He also said that he has asked the appropriate national federations to open investigations of Michael Barry, Matt White, Johan Bruyneel and John Lelangue.  Read more here.

  65. 16:35:02 CEST

    Nibali third at the intermediate time check.

  66. 16:35:57 CEST

    Scarponi is on a lonely, steep section at the moment.

  67. 16:36:33 CEST

    It was hard to recognize Evans today, as he is all in red.  That is because he is leading the points ranking.

  68. 16:37:16 CEST

    Rabobank's Bauke Mollema has finished with a time of 44.15, making him 19th at the moment.

  69. 16:38:42 CEST

    Michele Scarponi has made up the three minutes on Gerdemann and will catch the German shortly.

  70. 16:40:41 CEST

    Karpets has finished, fairly far back.

  71. 16:41:12 CEST

    Pinotti struggles his way up a steep section with only few hundred metres to go.

  72. 16:42:36 CEST

    14th place for Pinotti.

  73. 16:44:15 CEST

    Evans sets a new best time at the time check, by three seconds.

  74. 16:45:27 CEST

    Cunego finishes as ninth overall.  Satre 27th at the intermediate time check.  Two km left for Scarponi.

  75. 16:47:54 CEST

    Basso fourth at the intermediate time check.

  76. 16:49:19 CEST

    Kiserlovski of Liquigas finishes with a time of 44:28, making him 23rd at the moment.

  77. 16:49:53 CEST

    Scarponi is looking good for a new best time, but those last 700 metres are pretty nasty.....

  78. 16:50:31 CEST

    Porte 14th at the time check, nearly a minute down.

  79. 16:51:56 CEST

    No, Sarponi won't hold on for the best time.  He is already over.

  80. 16:53:31 CEST

    Scarponi couldn't maintain to the end.  He finishes with a time of 42:35, which is 1:07 behind the current leader.

  81. 16:54:00 CEST

    Arroyo 25th at the time check.

  82. 16:54:54 CEST

    Gerdemann finally hit the finish line, way down.  His time is 47:27.

  83. 16:56:23 CEST

    An excellent ride by Nibali.  He comes in with a time of 42.29, which is 1.01 back and puts him in third place at the moment.

  84. 16:57:21 CEST

    Vinokourov is the next to fight his lonely way up to the finish line.

  85. 16:57:47 CEST

    The last few hundred metres for Vino.

  86. 16:58:16 CEST

    Evans is up out of the saddle through the crowds lining the road.

  87. 16:59:32 CEST

    Vinokourov is only sixth, at 43:05.

  88. 17:00:55 CEST

    It won't be  new best time for Evans, but it will still be a good time.

  89. 17:01:49 CEST

    He is up out of the saddle sprinting uphill the last 50 metres.  He comes in second, 42 seconds behind Garzelli.

  90. 17:02:32 CEST

    Now it is Sastre's turn to fight his way through the crowds.

  91. 17:04:02 CEST

    Sastre is still working his slow way up.

  92. 17:04:43 CEST

    A fan tries to help Basso by pushing him along.  That can backfire and harm the rider.

  93. 17:06:27 CEST

    Sastre is over the line with a tie of 43:59, dropping him way back.

  94. 17:07:22 CEST

    Basso nears the finish.

  95. 17:07:37 CEST

    He is losing time to Evans.

  96. 17:08:12 CEST

    His time is 42:38, which puts him 28 seconds down on Evans.  He is currently sixth on the stage.

  97. 17:08:46 CEST

    Only two riders left on the course, neither of which we expect to win.

  98. 17:11:34 CEST

    Porte finally sees the finish line.

  99. 17:12:21 CEST

    The young Tasmanian riding for Saxo Bank finishes with a tie of 43:45, making him 16th on the day.

  100. 17:13:08 CEST

    Arroyo is the last to come int, ad stil has a bit to go.

  101. 17:14:37 CEST

    Arroyo will hold on to his pink jersey again.

  102. 17:15:31 CEST

    He bumps Porte down a place.  Arroyo's time of 43:44 makes him 16th on the day.

  103. 17:17:02 CEST

    A stunning win for the 36-year-old Garzelli, who is riding for Acqua & Sapone.

  104. 17:19:02 CEST

    Congratulations today not only to Garzelli but to all the riders.  Every one who made it to the top today has conquered the Plan de Corones!

  105. 17:21:00 CEST

    We have some changes in the GC:  Basso has moved into second, Porte is third, Evans fourth and Sastre fifth.

  106. 17:22:51 CEST

    Thanks for reading along and join us again tomorrow.

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