Following Mikel Landa's departure on stage 10, Tom Dumoulin (Giant-Alpecin) has become the second of the pre-race favourites to abandon the Giro d'Italia after calling it quits during stage 11. The Dutchman climbed off in the feed zone after battling with saddle sores for the past few days.
Dumoulin had a good start to the Giro d’Italia, taking stage victory on the opening day in Appeldoorn and moving into pink. He held the race lead for most of the first week, handing it over to Marcel Kittel for a single day when the German took his second straight win on stage 3.
Dumoulin would eventually hand over his maglia rosa for good to Gianluca Brambilla on stage 8 after cracking on the Alpe di Poti. The 25-year-old stated that his sudden drop out of contention was due to a bad day on the bike but the next day’s time trial would be an opportunity to make some time back and perhaps return to the pink jersey. That wouldn’t happen, however, and he would later reveal that he was suffering from saddle sores.
During the rest day, Dumoulin stated his intentions to drop out of overall contention and aim for stage wins. It became quickly apparent when the race resumed that he was seriously struggling after he lost some 13 minutes on Tuesday’s stage 11.
"It was a hard day and it was a little bit too much for me," he told reporters at the finish line. “My saddle sore was not too good today. It was worse at the beginning and then better near the end. I'd hoped to have recovered more on the rest day."