The 2012 winner of the Tour de France Sir Bradley Wiggins is yet to take an individual victory this season, which has surprised many after the Sky Procycling rider won a historic streak of tours last season including Paris-Nice, Romandie and the Dauphiné before becoming the first rider from Great Britain to win the Tour de France.
His desire to target and conquer the Giro d'Italia was hyped-up months ahead of the race start in Naples on 4 May and his Sky squad promptly delivered on the second day of racing in the team time trial. The group effort victory around Ischia was the first 'attack' against his general classification rivals but since then Wiggins has suffered from crashes, punctures, bad luck and after days of rain-soaked conditions, appears to have lost his nerve on the reported ice rink roads and twisting descents.
Wiggins performed marginally below the top mark in the 54.8km individual TT on Stage 8 after puncturing in the early part of the race and perhaps took longer than normal to find his rhythm again but falling off the pace is becoming a dangerous trend after he trailed behind the main group on Stage 9 and required the assistance of a number of his teammates to make the cut with his fellow GC rivals.
Sky's stake at the maglia rosa is far from lost but it will take a systematic approach for the absolute leader to move back into serious contention. With current leader Vincenzo Nibali (Cannondale) and a resurgent Cadel Evans (BMC) already ahead, Wiggins will need to up his ante if he is going to ride into Bescia with pink on his back.