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Video: Mark Renshaw on leading out Giro d’Italia sprints

Mark Renshaw (HTC-Highroad) has a very specific job in Italy.

Mark Renshaw (HTC-Highroad) has a very specific job in Italy. (Image credit: Barry Ryan)

Mark Renshaw (HTC-Highroad) expects two opportunities for the sprinters on the second week of the Giro d’Italia. The Australian also outlined how the finales of Giro stages are often more technically demanding than at the Tour de France.

“We’ve definitely earmarked today [as a bunch sprint],” Renshaw told Cyclingnews ahead of Tuesday’s stage to Teramo. “Tomorrow I think will be too difficult for a bunch sprint and the last day into Ravenna will be our last chance for a sprint finish.”

Chances for the fast men were few and far between in the opening week of the Giro. The opening road stage to Parma the sole mass finish contested by a full complement on sprinters, as Alessandro Petacchi (Lampre-ISD) bested Renshaw’s teammate Mark Cavendish.

“We were unlucky not to win the first stage with Cav,” Renshaw said. “He had good legs but he just made maybe an error and Petacchi got the better of him.”

Saturday’s stage to Tropea was one of the few days that seemed to present the possibility of a bunch finish in the opening week, but Alberto Contador’s attack in the closing kilometres underlined the difference between finishes at the Giro and the Tour de France.

“They’re a lot more difficult than a Tour de France stage finish,” Renshaw explained. “In the Tour we have a whole team dedicated to leading out the finish. Here we’ve got a few less riders. The parcours are always very difficult. Zomegnan always wants a spectacle, so he throws in tight turns, little hills.”