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Giro d'Italia 2013: Stage 10


Hello and welcome back to Cyclingnews' live coverage from the Giro d'Italia. We're back after the first rest and for the peloton it's the first stage in the mountains.

After yesterday's rest day the racing kicks off again with a 167 kilometre stage from Cordenons to Montasio.

The race climbs into the Friuli region close to Austria, with the first mountain stage and first mountain top finish of this year's race.

Things get nasty at Sella Nevea after a series of tight hairpins. The gradient kicks up to an average of 12% for two kilometres with one section at 20%.

In the race for the maglia rosa, this how things currently stand with Nibali leading Evans and Gesink:

As for today's weather, blue skies, warm sunshine and the riders have just left the start.

Today marks the first major test in the mountains for the GC contenders. The first week has been anything but a walk in the park but this is ultimately an all together different prospect and challenge.

Nibali, for the slim advantages he's build up, will want to push home his dominance today. However he also has to protect himself from a number of dangerous rivals who will be looking to gain time on him. Michele Scarponi is likely to try and shake things up on the final climb but Sky could be the biggest threat.

With Uran and Henao the British team have two of the best climbers in the race. Sky don't usually go on the offensive in the mountains of major tours but Henao and Uran are built for such a scenario.

Ryder Hesjedal has been written off by many after he lost time on the third cat climb on stage 9. Today, in theory, he should be able to hang with the major contenders but he'll need to attack if he's feeling strong. At over 3 minutes down on Nibali it's out of the question that he'll be able to go with an early move but it's possible that Garmin could send someone like Stetina or Danielson up the road for Hesjedal to work with later. If the Canadian has any hopes of retaining his crown he needs to start the fightback today.

On the subject of Garmin-Sharp. We have here a video in which we take a tour of their team bus.

On the rest day we also caught up with Matt Goss and the Orica GreenEdge team. Here's another video, this time of the Australian team going through their rest day motions.

Overnight we had stage 2 of the Tour of California too. You can read the race report, see the images, and results, right here. #letleviride

A couple of dark horses for today could be Ivan Santaromita and Domenico Pozzovivo. Both climbers might be given some freedom by the likes of Nibali and Evans but they'll have to take a risk and strike out a little bit earlier than the main favoutires. Santaromita has looked very impressive since moving from BMC to Vini Fantini.

On Wiggins, he's not given up the fight just yet. On yesterday's rest day the Tour de France champion talked up his chances. You can read his comments, right here.


So far there have been a few early attacks from the peloton. Androni trying to send a number of riders up the road but so far there hasn't been a successful break.

155km remaining from 167km

Rob Ruijgh (Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling), Giairo Ermeti (Androni Giocattoli), Fabio Felline (Androni Giocattoli), Wilson Marentes Torres (Colombia) but no sooner have they gone clear the bunch react and bring them back.

152km remaining from 167km

In terms of weather it's 18 degrees out there at the moment but it's going to dip down to 13 as we start climbing. Blue skies, with a few clouds around but there's a 50/50 chance of rain. That could be critical on the descent of the Passo Cason di Lanza.

Daniele Bennati (Team Saxo-Tinkoff), Kenny Dehaes (Lotto Belisol), Elia Viviani (Cannondale Pro Cycling), Tiago Machado (RadioShack Leopard), Yaroslav Popovych (RadioShack Leopard), David Millar (Garmin-Sharp), Thomas Dekker (Garmin-Sharp), Maarten Tjallingii (Blanco Pro Cycling Team), Jackson Rodriguez (Androni Giocattoli), Serge Pauwels (Omega Pharma-Quick Step), Oscar Gatto (Vini Fantini-Selle Italia), Pim Ligthart (Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling Team), Pavel Brutt (Katusha)

That's an interesting blend of riders in the break with a few sprinters like Benatti and Dehaes mixing things with Rodriguez, Machado and Popovych. It's the sort of break more akin to Classics racing than mountain stages in the grand tours.

Fantini have a man in the break but it's probably not Scinto's first choice with Gatto. Garmin's intentions are fairly clear and the same with RadioShack who will be looking to push Kiserlovski higher up in GC.

127km remaining from 167km

No moves from Sky, Lampre, BMC or Astana who are all saving their men for later, or they simply may have missed the move.

The gap goes out to over three minutes as the leaders race through Pinzano al Tagliamento at the 45 km point. Machado is the best placed rider on GC but he's over 15 minutes down so no real threat on Nibali's maglia rosa. The interesting point will be how much the pace increases from the bunch in the first major climb.

Garmin and Radioshack should be able to muster a decent amount of control over the break at least in terms of marshalling them through the early stages. Both teams will have similar tactics for today and Tjallingii will be expected to pitch in too.

Rodriguez flies the flag for Savio's team in the break. The Italian team boss will have wanted at least two men in the early move this morning but Rodriguez is a decent enough climber, especially compared to the majority of the riders currently in the move. Pellizotti hails from around these parts, like Gasparotto, who was at the start this morning, and Savio will be expecting great things from the Italian nation champion.

the descent of the Passo Cason di Lanza is apparently as testing as that of the Crostis. Remember that was the climb that was taken out of the route back in 2011 due to safety concerns. The roads are very, very narrow and steep.

115km remaining from 167km

The first uphill finish of the race. A relatively short stage, at 167 km, complicated by two extremely demanding, Category 1 climbs. The first 100 km of the stage trace a shallow but constant ascent as far as the first Intermediate Sprint at Paularo (km 102.6). Then the climb up to Passo Cason di Lanza (km 117.4) begins, with gradients up to 16%. A short, technical downhill section interrupts up the climb, before the hardest section that leads up to the pass.

Beyond the pass, a long descent begins, the upper part on narrow, twisting roads as far as Pontebba (km 132.9), the lower part on less extreme gradients and on wide roads, as far as Chiusaforte (km 145.3). The final climb measures approximately 22 km, with the final 4 km at very high gradients

The 11 km consists of steep, challenging climbing. After the bridge over the Torrente Raccolana (156.5), the gradient touches 14%. Between -8 km and the Intermediate Sprint at Sella Nevea (km 162.6) lies a succession of hairpin bends. The right-hand hairpins are in tunnels, with good visibility. After Sella Nevea, the road narrows, For nearly 2 km, gradients exceed 12%, with a maximum of 20%. The final 2 km are uphill, although less steep. The finish line stands at the end of a 60 m straight. The finish line is on asphalt, 4 m wide.

The average speed for the first hour of racing was 49.5kph.

That pace will surely have an effect on Astana's strength on the climbs coming up. Nibali's men are still on the front setting the pace with Sky, BMC and Blanco gathered behind them.

The break's advantage goes out to 5'20 with 60km raced. The leaders are roughly 20km from the feedzone.

A few light showers pass over the peloton but nothing to really trouble the riders on the road.

Brutt is in the break today. Katusha have had a hugely successful Giro to date, with two stage wins and a spell in the maglia rosa.

The break continue to push ahead and now have a gap of 5:23 over the peloton. They're less than 30km from the foot of the first climb.

The break close in on the feedzone and their lead has pushed out to 7'10. No panic yet from the peloton with Astana still on the front and setting the pace for race leader Vincenzo Nibali.

Fabio Taborre has retired from the. He joins Degenkolb on the sidelines who abandoned the race the rest day. The German picked up his stage win to add to those he picked up in last year's Vuelta.

77km remaining from 167km

A number of stage winners in the break today:

Popovych has ridden the race six times. Remember when he was tipped as the next Eddy Merckx? But he's never won a stage.

The RadioShack rider was in the top five back in 2004 and even wore the maglia rosa from stages 13-16.

72km remaining from 167km

Blanco, as they have throughout this year's race, form that pod around Robert Gesink. They've done such a good job of keeping him out of trouble through the opening week of racing. He'll be a really interesting rider to watch on today's final climb. This time last year he was destroying the field in California.

Evans is right on Nibali's wheel. Before stages he'll define a game plan with his teammates. When at Lotto he used to ask him teamates to bring him to a specific rider's rear wheel at a precise point in the race.

The gap has gone out now to 9'09 with Bennati taking a long pull on the front of the break.


From here the roads continues to rise as the break head towards the foot of the climb.

64km remaining from 167km

The break immediately spread over the road as each rider tries to pick his line and find his pace. Two factor here: firstly, it's the day after a rest day and that can play havoc with a rider's legs. Secondly, it's the first day in the mountains and some riders can really struggle to adjust to the pace, dropping down to a 39' ring.

Astana continue to do the job that Sky are accustomed to, sitting on the front and controlling the pace of the field.

Do you think Nibali will extend his lead today? Let me know here.

The peloton are on the foot of the first climb now too as up ahead Rodriguez set the pace for the break. He flicks his arm out, calling for some assistance.

Astana aren't hanging around, and they already have the peloton strung out through these tight and twisting roads.

Dehaes is the first rider from the break to run into difficultly.

Now Sky have come to the front and they start to set the pace for Wiggins/Henao/Uran.

Popovych is setting the pace for the break with Dekker on his wheel.

Aru is in difficulty as Sky continue to do the damage the peloton is really thinning out with Paolo and Oss among those dropped.

60km remaining from 167km

Sky are trying to pull Astana apart here and isolate Nibali as quickly as possible.

Nibali still has a number of men with him as Wiggins turns his head to see what damage has been done. All the main contenders are still in the mix.

Popovych continues to set the pace for the break but the gap continues to drop.

Nibali has dropped his chain and needs to stop by the side of the road to fix the situation. Sky maintain their pace setting.

Up ahead the break is starting to split with Rodriguez putting in a sizeable dig.

Nibali has made it back into the peloton and onto the Sky express.

The gap though is down to 4'35.

Jackson Rodriguez has a decent gap on the remnants of the break with Gatto, Pauwels and Popo chasing.

Hesjedal is at the very back of the peloton. They're on a descent but that's a very worrying sign for the defending champion.

Pellizotti clearly hasn't read the script. He and teammate have jumped clear on the climb and Sky have let them get a small advantage.

The maglia rosa group is down to less than 40 riders.

Hesjesdal  is out of the saddle but he's dropped from the Sky group. He has Danielson for cover but it's not going to be enough.

Pellizotti has gone passed David Millar.

Rosa and Pellizotti have about 20 seconds on the peloton.

Samuel Sanchez is also under pressure and has dropped to the back of the maglia rosa group. Sky are splitting the race to pieces.

Pellizotti drops Rosa and starts to push through the rest of the break.

He can't even hold the American's wheel at the moment though.

Savio seems to have played this one well. Pellizotti should be with Rodriguez by the foot of the final climb.

Sanchez is losing contact now.

Five Sky riders on the front setting the pace with Nibali down to one or two men. Scarponi looks to be on his own.

Three men left with Wiggins as Nibali and Evans rider almost side by side. Gesink is also still here.

Henao has been dropped. So Sky are left with Uran, Wiggins, Cataldo and Siutsou.

Rodriguez leads over the top of the climb. He has 4'00 over the peloton.

46km remaining from 167km

Nibali has put a man on the front as the peloton start the descent as well now.

Astana are really pushing the pace on the descent, looking for every vulnerability in the Sky camp. Nibali is currently in second wheel.

The descents on the switchbacks are steep and tight. The peloton are doing a good job though and taking the corners well.

Pellizotti loses it on a corner. He's quickly up and riding again though. Very lucky there because that could have been a lot worse for the Italian national champion.

Rodriguez seems to have some problems with his gears. Pellizotti is now with Dekker and Viviani.

Bentancur is at the back  of the peloton calling for his team car. He's been there for around 10 km of racing.

Agnoli is back with the Astana team car and picks up some supplies before the start of the final climb of the day. It's all uphill from here.

The pace slows at the front of the bunch as everyone gets ready for the final climb.

Sky take control once again and move to the front after the brief let up in pace. Wiggins still with three teammates as the peloton head towards the final climb of the day of Altopiano del Montasio.

Rodriguez meanwhile gets the bike change he's been calling for.

The saddle isn't right and he drops back to the team car to have it adjusted.

Pauwels has joined up with the Androni rider at the head of the race. They have 3'30 on the maglia rosa group.

A reminder of the top ten as we start the final climb in just a few moment:

Pellizotti has been caught by the maglia rosa group.

A group containing Sanchez has made it back to the peloton. Hesjedal isn't in there though.

The gap to the two leaders is now just 1'42 with 18km to go.

Gesink, Wiggins, Nibali, Evans, they're all in there. Scarponi too as Sky continue on the front of the peloton.

15km remaining from 167km

Wiggins is little bit further back in the group while his teammates set the pace.

The two leaders exchange a few words but the game is almost up with the gap at one minute.

Wiggins still  hasn't moved up yet. Has Sky switched to plan  B with Uran?

Rodriguez and Pauwels can see the cars beginning to pull over, a sign that they're about to be caught by the peloton.

Kelderman is being dropped. The rider in white is off the back.

Rubiano also dropped as the two leaders are caught.

And Sanchez is at the very back of the field too now.

10km remaining from 167km

Cataldo leads Uran with Wiggins still in the middle of the group.

Kangert has been dropped now too.

Wiggins has Gesink his wheel at the moment but he's still around 15 riders back.

9km to go. Evans,Wiggins, Gesink, Nibali, Wiggins and Uran all still in the lead group.

Di Luca is also in the mix.

Santambrogio is on his wheel at the moment and looking strong.

Agnoli loses contact and Cataldo is turning up the pace.

When Cataldo pulls over will Uran attack?

And Uran has attacked.

The Sky climber has clipped off the front of the group.

He's 2'49 down on pink so Nibali can't give him too much room.

7km remaining from 167km

And it looks like Wiggins has moved up to the near the front of the peloton too.

The first really serious questions are being asked of Nibali in this year's Giro d'Italia.

Uran looks to be pulling away here. Nibali is under pressure.

The Sky rider has 17 seconds.

Wiggins is on Evans' rear wheel but the pace is about to get a lot steeper.

30 seconds now for Uran.

Di Luca is in trouble and has been dropped.

4km remaining from 167km

Agnoli leads the chase but the gap has gone out to 45 seconds.

And now Nibali takes it up from the front of the peloton.

No acceleration, he just calmly moves to the front and carries on with the pace work.

And Nibali takes 3 seconds at the time bonus sprint. The gap is out to 50 seconds.

4km to go and Uran is turning the race on it's head at the moment.

The main contenders are all still together with Nibali and Scarponi side by side.

Uran increases the pace again and chips another few seconds from the leaders.

Henao has been dropped again and Cataldo.

Wiggins is still with Nibali and co. as Scarponi has a teammate to set the pace.

Majka is on the front for Saxo but Lampre come back over the top and set the pace again. Still no attacks from the favourites.

Betancur has been dropped.

Intxausti has attacked.

And now Gesink is slidding off the back and so is Wiggins.

Wiggins and Gesink are off the back with 3km to go.

Pozzovivo leads Nibali

Kiserlovski is there too.

Scarponi is being dropped too.  He's with Wiggins.

Pozzovivo leads the chase of Uran with Evans and Nibali just a little further back

Uran now has 28 seconds with Wiggins on the ropes and Nibali just dropping all his rivals.

Wiggins has dropped Scarponi and he's on his own.

Nibali has dropped Evans now too as Gesink starts to drag himself back into contention.

Riders are all over the road at the moment.

Evans is giving it everything to get back on terms with Nibali. Betancur and Santambrogio are also there.

2km remaining from 167km

The road starts to level off and this is where Wiggins can try and claw back some time.

Evans is back in Nibali's wheel.

Wiggins still clear of Scarponi and few other riders.

And now Evans leads the chase for Uran with Nibali on his wheel.

A complete shake up of the GC today as Wiggins looks set to lose more time. And Betancur attacks the Nibali group.

Evans just puts his head down and carries on setting the pace. Uran has 1km go to.

Uran is heading to the finish and now he'll take the stage and he'll also take Sky's leadership.

Nibali attacks.

Uran takes the stage win.

Betancur is second.

Nibali takes third on the stage ahead of Evans and Satambrogio.

Wiggins comes in and loses over a minute.

Nibali leads Evans by 41 seconds while Uran moves up to third. Wiggins holds fourth.

Top ten:
1 Rigoberto Uran Uran (Col) Sky Procycling 4:37:42
2 Carlos Alberto Betancur Gomez (Col) Ag2R La Mondiale 0:00:20
3 Vincenzo Nibali (Ita) Astana Pro Team 0:00:31
4 Mauro Santambrogio (Ita) Vini Fantini-Selle Italia 0:00:31
5 Cadel Evans (Aus) BMC Racing Team 0:00:31
6 Rafal Majka (Pol) Team Saxo-Tinkoff 0:00:31
7 Domenico Pozzovivo (Ita) Ag2R La Mondiale 0:00:31
8 Robert Kiserlovski (Cro) RadioShack Leopard 0:00:47
9 Benat Intxausti Elorriaga (Spa) Movistar Team 0:01:06
10 Bradley Wiggins (GBr) Sky Procycling 0:01:08

So Nibali pulls on another maglia rosa. He rode well today, covered the moves that needed covering and then extended the time gaps over Gesink and Evans. Uran is now a genuine threat, if Sky start to concentrate on the climber's chances of overall victory. Wiggins isn't out out of but he's lost more time.

General classification after stage 10
1 Vincenzo Nibali (Ita) Astana Pro Team 38:57:32
2 Cadel Evans (Aus) BMC Racing Team 0:00:41
3 Rigoberto Uran Uran (Col) Sky Procycling 0:02:04
4 Bradley Wiggins (GBr) Sky Procycling 0:02:08
5 Robert Gesink (Ned) Blanco Pro Cycling Team 0:02:12
6 Michele Scarponi (Ita) Lampre-Merida 0:02:13
7 Mauro Santambrogio (Ita) Vini Fantini-Selle Italia 0:02:55
8 Przemyslaw Niemiec (Pol) Lampre-Merida 0:03:35
9 Domenico Pozzovivo (Ita) Ag2R La Mondiale 0:04:17
10 Rafal Majka (Pol) Team Saxo-Tinkoff 0:04:21

Thanks for joining us today. You can find our race report, results and photos, right here. We'll be back  in a few hours time with our live coverage from the Amgen Tour of California.

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