Dumoulin, Nibali and Miguel López fall at first obstacle of Giro d'Italia - Analysis

The contenders on Mount Etna during stage 4 of the Giro d'Italia
The contenders on Mount Etna during stage 4 of the Giro d'Italia (Image credit: Getty Images Sport)

The elimination race begins. In stern defiance of the clichés, Mount Etna again refused to create an eruption on the Giro d'Italia, but the volcano instead bore out another truism. As ever, the first summit finish of the Giro didn't tell us who would win the race, but it did confirm who would not, namely, Tom Dumoulin, Vincenzo Nibali and Miguel Ángel López.

Dumoulin's climbing form had been a mystery coming into the Giro d'Italia given his long absence from the business end of a Grand Tour, but the portents had not been positive during his early-season outing on Jebel Jais at the UAE Tour. Jumbo-Visma blamed a back injury on that occasion, but there was no obvious mitigation for his hefty time loss here.

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Barry Ryan
Head of Features

Barry Ryan is Head of Features at Cyclingnews. He has covered professional cycling since 2010, reporting from the Tour de France, Giro d’Italia and events from Argentina to Japan. His writing has appeared in The Independent, Procycling and Cycling Plus. He is the author of The Ascent: Sean Kelly, Stephen Roche and the Rise of Irish Cycling’s Golden Generation, published by Gill Books.