Tyler Farrar (Garmin-Barracuda) says he is expecting a difficult day’s racing as stage six of the 2012 Giro d'Italia delves deep into the Apennines, with the infamously steep Montelupone climb - 53 kilometres from the finish - the potential flashpoint.
“They don’t go up the toughest side but it’s still the Montelupone, there is no easy side to the Montelupone,” Farrar told Cyclingnews at the start of stage six. “I think it’s going to be game on from there on the stage.”
“From there, you have the Montegranaro (33kms to go) and the [unclassified climb of the] Santa Lucia [23 kilometres to go]. It’s a very hard stage today.”
Garmin-Barracuda are running a double strategy with Ryder Hesjedal for the overall long-term and with Ramunas Narvardauskas in pink.
“Hopefully he’ll have the legs today, but it’s quite a hard stage. We’re in a luxury position, because we have Ryder there for the pink too. But we want to keep Ramunas in the lead for as long as we possibly can.”
Farrar was dropped on the final climb of yesterday’s stage to Fano, losing all chance of taking the pink jersey.
“It was a stage I was going for, but I just had an off-day. I got a bit surprised on the climbs, but that isn’t really an excuse.”
Asked if the team time trial and going all out there for Garmin’s victory could have had an effect, Farrar said “I don’t think so. The team time trial’s not easy, but everybody had to do it. Hopefully I’ll have better legs today.”
Overall, the American says, “I haven’t had a bad start to the Giro, just yesterday. The form is there and we won the team time trial, I’ve been up there in the mix, I still have a few more opportunities, although there are a few more mountain stages.” Not to mention the Montelupone.