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Tirreno-Adriatico 2018: Stage 3


164km remaining from 239km

As we pick up the action after 75km of racing on the longest stage of Tirreno-Adriatico, a break of five riders has a lead of 7:45 over the peloton. Jacopo Mosca (Wilier-Selle Italia), Nicola Bagioli (Nippo-Vini Fantini), Sho Hatsuyama (Nippo-Vini Fantini), Dennis van Winden (Israel Cycling Academy) and Stepan Kurianov (Gazprom-Rusvelo) broke away shortly after the flag dropped in Follonica and had built a lead of almost nine minutes by the time they reached kilometre 40.

Their advantage has come down very slightly since, to a little under 8 minutes. Bagioli, who wears the green jersey of best climber after his cameo in yesterday's early break, led over the Roccastrada to buttress his lead in the classification. The leading quintet are now on the day's second classified climb, the evocatively titled Passo del Lume Spento. Considering the length of the stage and the rugged terrain, one imagines this break will be quietly quenched long before the uphill finish in Trevi.


There are four classified climbs on the agenda on this 239km stage, though in truth, the road rises and dips all day long. The third categorised climb comes at La Foce after 113km, while the second of two ascents to the finish at Trevi (2.5km, with gradients of 20% in the final kilometre) also counts towards the mountains competition.


The general classification picture was as follows ahead of stage 3:


1 Patrick Bevin (NZl) BMC Racing Team 4:34:43
2 Damiano Caruso (Ita) BMC Racing Team
3 Greg Van Avermaet (Bel) BMC Racing Team
4 Rohan Dennis (Aus) BMC Racing Team
5 Daryl Impey (RSA) Mitchelton-Scott 0:00:04
6 Michal Kwiatkowski (Pol) Team Sky 0:00:09
7 Geraint Thomas (GBr) Team Sky
8 Salvatore Puccio (Ita) Team Sky
9 Chris Froome (GBr) Team Sky
10 Jonathan Castroviejo (Spa) Team Sky
11 Fernando Gaviria (Col) Quick-Step Floors 0:00:15
12 Bob Jungels (Lux) Quick-Step Floors
13 Marcel Kittel (Ger) Katusha-Alpecin 0:00:18
14 Peter Sagan (Svk) Bora-Hansgrohe 0:00:24
15 Tom Dumoulin (Ned) Team Sunweb 0:00:25
16 Simon Geschke (Ger) Team Sunweb
17 Lennard Kämna (Ger) Team Sunweb
18 Michael Hepburn (Aus) Mitchelton-Scott
19 Wilco Kelderman (Ned) Team Sunweb
20 Nathan Haas (Aus) Katusha-Alpecin 0:00:28


160km remaining from 239km

Bagioli led over the Passo del Lume Spento, ahead of his teammate Hatsuyama and Mosca, who was also part of yesterday's break.


Tirreno-Adriatico began life expressly as a preparation race for Milan-San Remo and the length of today's stage - some 237km - is obviously aimed towards those banking miles ahead of La Classicissima's nigh-on 300km next weekend. Marcel Kittel won his first professional race in Italy yesterday, which naturally led to questions about his hopes for Milan-San Remo. Remarkably, the German has never participated in the race, but looks set to make his debut this year. "If I go to Milan-San Remo, then for me it'll be in a free role. There are no expectations on me, the team will have other leaders," Kittel said. "I think a sprinter should be at the start once in his life, I think it's a nice dream for me." Stephen Farrand has the full story here.


For the time being, BMC Racing Team are controlling affairs at the head of the peloton. Damiano Caruso held the blue jersey after BMC won the opening team time trial, before passing it to Paddy Bevin yesterday after the New Zealander placed 5th in the bunch sprint. "It's a weird feeling to take a jersey from a teammate but the plan for the week doesn't change," said Bevin. Stefan Kung, meanwhile, rides on the front for BMC despite dislocating his shoulder in the crash in the final kilometres of yesterday's stage.


157km remaining from 239km

The five escapees have passed through Montalcino, site of the finish of the dramatic, rain-soaked stage over the strade bianche on the 2010 Giro d'Italia. Cadel Evans claimed stage honours in a mud-encrusted rainbow jersey, while crash victim Vincenzo Nibali conceded his maglia rosa to Alexandre Vinokourov. Read the report from that day here.




145km remaining from 239km

Stefan Kung (BMC) continues to lead the way in the peloton, which is currently 8:10 behind the five escapees.


Chris Froome's presence in the peloton and the wait for a verdict on his salbutamol case has dominated the headlines in the opening weeks of the season, and, much like the Alberto Contador case in 2011, looks set to overshadow much of the season. UCI president David Lappartient suggested that Froome might recuse himself from the Tour de France if the case is not resolved by then. Stephen Farrand has Froome's response here.


125km remaining from 239km

Meanwhile, our five escapees have reached the summit of the day's third ascent, La Foce. No prizes for guessing the first rider to the top as Nicola Bagioli doubles down on his lead in the mountains classification, leading Mosca and Hatsuyama over the top. The peloton is on the lower slopes of the climb, having navigated the feed zone at San Quirico d'Orcia.


Bernhard Eisel, a member of the Team Sky squad that shepherded Bradley Wiggins to Tour de France victory in 2012, has rejected the allegation, made in the select committee report into doping in British sport, that the team availed of corticosteroids to improve power-to-weight ratio ahead of the race. ""Nothing happened in my time, while I was there, that I saw. People will still not believe it but it is how it is. The questions out there are just there to add speculation and you can't really give an interview anymore because it doesn't matter what you say," Eisel said. Daniel Benson has the full story here.


110km remaining from 239km

Bagioli, Mosca, Van Winden, Hatsuyama and Kurianov reach the outskirts of Chianciano Terme with a lead of 7:30 over the peloton, which is being led by the blue jersey himself, Paddy Bevin. BMC will ride today in support of Greg Van Avermaet, who tipped Peter Sagan and Michal Kwiatkowski as the favourites for victory on the uphill finish in Trevi.


Michal Kwiatkowski placed a striking 4th in the bunch sprint yesterday, and the Pole is one of at last three potential overall winners Team Sky have in this race, alongside Geraint Thomas and Froome, who was held up in the late crash yesterday but managed to latch back on to the peloton before the finish. Speaking at the start in Follonica, Kwiatkowski said that Sky did not have an express leader at this juncture, but rather an array of options.


101km remaining from 239km

A bike change for Tom Dumoulin, who has had his share of mechanical mishap in recent weeks, starting with his ill-starred time trial at the Abu Dhabi Tour. The Dutchman quickly gets a new machine and rejoins the peloton.


99km remaining from 239km

The escapees reach the intermediate sprint at Moiano, just as the race crosses from Tuscany into Umbria. Kurianov claims the spoils ahead of Mosca.


94km remaining from 239km

Despite its length, today's stage is all but certain to be decided in the steep, steep final kilometre. This is what faces the peloton in Trevi.


85km remaining from 239km

Greg Van Avermaet (BMC) couldn't stop winning last spring, but though he got off the mark at the Tour of Oman last month, he hasn't quite hit his stride in 2018. Today's stage might be an opportunity for the Belgian to showcase his talents. "I'm feeling pretty good, and the stage should be good opportunity to see how far I've come," Van Avermaet told Cyclingnews yesterday. "It's going to be a hard stage and I need to finish. I know it's really steep and sometimes more for climbers and lightweight guys, but it's good to test the legs on a stage like that."


82km remaining from 239km

There's a sense of the calm before the storm as the escapees pass through Tavernelle with a lead of 7:40 over the peloton. BMC continue to set a steady tempo in the main peloton, but we can expect the gap to begin to drop steadily once the race reaches the final 60km or so. The next major landmark on the route is the uphill intermediate sprint at Montefalco - scene of Tom Dumoulin's time trial win at last year's Giro - with 24km to go, and we can probably expect the escapees to be all but reeled in by that juncture.


A delegation from Movistar moves towards the front of the peloton. In the absence of last year's winner Nairo Quintana, Mikel Landa leads the Movistar challenge here, and it's interesting to see the team perched behind BMC at the head of the bunch.


72km remaining from 239km

Paddy Bevin continues his shift of work at the head of the peloton on behalf of his BMC team leaders Rohan Dennis and Greg Van Avermaet. 7:26 the gap to the break.


One abandon to report thus far today, incidentally. Soren Kragh Andersen (Sunweb) climbed into the team car earlier in the afternoon. The Dane had been suffering from illness in recent days.


66km remaining from 239km

Bagioli, Kurianov, Hatsuyama, Mosca and Van Winden are still collaborating well at the head of the race, and they still have a lead of some 7:15 over the peloton, where Paddy Bevin is still performing the bulk of the pace-making duties.


61km remaining from 239km

The peloton is finally beginning to make some kind of inroads into the break's lead, which now stands at 6:41.


Tom Dumoulin drops back to the team car for a parley before being paced back up to the rear of the peloton. The Dutchman was struggling with illness as the race began, and it's unclear if he was consulting on a mechanical problem or his health.


56km remaining from 239km

Kung and Bevin are still swapping turns at the front of the bunch as the race passes Marsciano, but the BMC duo will need some help if they are to peg back the five escapees before the finish. The gap stands at 6:45.


52km remaining from 239km

A crash on the descent past Marsciano sees a rider from Israel Cycling Academy come off on the roadside, though he is quickly back on his feet.


50km remaining from 239km

The break enters the final 50km still with a hefty lead of 6:30 over the peloton. Peter Sagan's Bora-Hansgrohe team have sent German champion Marcus Burghardt to help with the chase effort at the head of the bunch.


47km remaining from 239km

Rigobert Uran (Education First-Drapac) makes his way back up to the peloton after dropping back with a mechanical issue. There has been a slight injection of pace in the bunch, and the deficit to the break has closed slightly to 6 minutes.


44km remaining from 239km

The added impetus of Burghardt's intervention is helping the peloton to make more serious inroads into the break's lead, which is now down to 5:40. Van Winden et al are sticking gamely to their task at the front, but their lead is finally beginning to be reshaped to more manageable dimensions.


40km remaining from 239km

Kung, Bevin and Burghardt swap turns at the head of the peloton, 5:30 behind the five leaders. The terrain becomes a little more rugged in this finale through Sagrantino wine country, and the escapees will surely start to pay a price for their early efforts.


There are also 40 kilometres remaining on stage 6 of Paris-Nice, and Patrick Fletcher is following the action here.


37km remaining from 239km

Mosca leads the break on a seemingly interminable false flat. Their pedalling is become a little more ragged now, after some 200 kilometres off the front. Burghardt piles on the pressure in the main bunch, 5:05 down on the break.


36km remaining from 239km

The peloton is beginning to line out as the intensity rises still further. 4:55 the gap to the escapees.


35km remaining from 239km

The break is shedding seconds off its lead in increasingly large clumps. Despite Mosca's best efforts, the gap has dropped sharply to 4:15.


32km remaining from 239km

A bike change for Diego Ulissi, who would certainly expect to shine on a stiff uphill finale like today's.


After working on the front for much of the day, race leader Patrick Bevin (BMC) was dropping back through the peloton when he was a faller along with Liam Bertazzo (Wilier-Selle Italia). Bevin remounts and is chasing on through the race convoy. He will get back on to the bunch, but it's safe to assume that the New Zealander will not be returning to the podium this afternoon.


30km remaining from 239km

The peloton closes to within 4 minutes of the break as they enter the final 30 kilometres. Bevin is consulting with the race doctor just behind the bunch.


28km remaining from 239km

Another crash towards the rear of the peloton sees a number of riders go down, with Simon Geschke (Sunweb) the worst affected. The German's race looks to be over.


Bevin was just latching back on to the peloton when the crash happened, but he managed to pick his way around it.


26km remaining from 239km

The break's lead has dropped to within three minutes, and Niki Terpstra (Quick-Step) has decieded to try his luck by countering alone from the peloton.


25km remaining from 239km

The escapees begin the climb towards the intermediate sprint at Montefalco, with a lead of 2:10 over Terpstra and 2:30 over the peloton.


24km remaining from 239km

Mosca wins the intermediate sprint at Montefalco. Terpstra, meanwhile, is continuing to plough his lone furrow on the climb, 1:58 behind the break.


Confirmation that Simon Geschke's race has come to an end. The German is conscious, but looks set to leave in an ambulance.


21km remaining from 239km

The bunch is just over 2 minutes down on the five escapees, and closing in on Terpstra.


A reminder that the race will tackle the climb of Trevi twice in the finale. This is the terrain that lies ahead.


19km remaining from 239km

Riders are being shelled out the back as they crest the climb outside Montefalco, with Paddy Bevin among the riders to be dropped. Terpstra, meanwhile, has swept up by the reduced bunch, which is now just 1:17 behind the five leaders.


17km remaining from 239km

The speed is ratcheting upwards in the main peloton, with Movistar among the teams represented in number near the front. Peter Sagan is also well placed in this reduced bunch.


16km remaining from 239km

Rafal Majka (Bora-Hansgrohe) is chasing back on to the rear of the reduced peloton. It's unclear if he had mechanical problems or if he was held up in the crash that took out Geschke. He has a couple of Bora teammates for company.


15km remaining from 239km

Fernando Gaviria knows today's finale is too tough for him, but the Colombian puts in a turn on the front of the bunch for Quick-Step. 44 seconds the gap to the break.


14km remaining from 239km

Rigoberto Uran has a lot of EF-Drapac teammates for company near the head of the peloton. The pace is frantic in the main peloton, and this looks set to be a white-knuckle run-in to the final climb.


13km remaining from 239km

No one team is managing to control this peloton, with riders and teams scrambling for position as the road narrows. 22 seconds the gap to the break.


12km remaining from 239km

EF-Drapac and Bahrain-Merida lead as the bunch heads for the base of the first ascent towards Trevi.


12km remaining from 239km

The break fragments as they begin the climb towards Trevi for the first time. Only Van Winden and Bagioli survive in front, but the bunch is closing in. Majka has made it back on, incidentally. 


12km remaining from 239km

Nicola Bagioli grinds on alone as the road narrows and the gradient stiffens. He has a lead of just 10 seconds over the fast-closing peloton.


Bagioli is inside the final kilometre of the climb, where the gradient kicks up to 20%. This will give the contenders a sighter of what they will face when they come around for the finish in a little over 11 kilometres.


11km remaining from 239km

Edoardo Zardini (Wilier-Selle Italia) attacks from the bunch in the final 500 metres of the climb, catching and passing Bagioli. Sky lead the peloton just behind him.


11km remaining from 239km

Zardini grinds up the final 200 metres towards the first passage through the finish line. Astana and Sky have strength in numbers towards the front of the bunch just behind him. Bob Jungels and Peter Sagan remain well placed.


The bunch is upon Zardini as they take the bell atop the climb of Trevi. There will be a most rapid run-in back to the base of this climb for what ought to be a high-octane finale.


10km remaining from 239km

Michal Kwiatkowski and Sky lead the peloton over the lip of the climb of Trevi and on the drop over the other side. Vincenzo Nibali, Miguel Angel Lopez, Tom Dumoulin and Mikel Landa are all well placed.


9km remaining from 239km

Kwiatkowski is one of four Sky riders at the head of the bunch stringing things out on this fast descent. Lopez has a cluster of Astana riders around him just behind.


8km remaining from 239km

Kwiatkowski, Froome and Geraint Thomas are on the head of the race for Team Sky on this narrow and fast descent. The road flattens out for a little under 5km ahead of the final kick to the line.


Majka was distanced on the first ascent of Trevi, and has only just taken the bell. His GC challenge is over.


6km remaining from 239km

There are around 40 riders or so in contention in this reduced front group. Philippe Gilbert and Peter Sagan are both prominent in this group. Meanwhile, Steve Morabito (Groupama-FDJ) takes a flyer and opens a small gap.


5km remaining from 239km

Gianni Moscon sets the pace for Sky in the reduced group, before a delegation from Bahrain-Merida take over. Morabito hangs onto a slender advantage.


5km remaining from 239km

Morabito is swept back up by the reduced peloton, which is led by competing trains from Sky and Bahrain-Merida.


4km remaining from 239km

Team Sky have six riders at the front of this very reduced group, which has barely more than 30 riders in total.


3km remaining from 239km

Peter Sagan, Nathan Haas and Mikel Landa are all lingering with intent in this reduced group, together with George Bennett (LottoNL-Jumbo).


3km remaining from 239km

Sky still lead on the approach to the base of this short finishing climb to Trevi. Greg Van Avermaet is up there for BMC, as are Adam Yates and Rigoberto Uran.


2km remaining from 239km

Sky lead ahead of the lower slopes of the climb. Froome sits in third wheel, with Nibal just alongside him.


1km remaining from 239km

The GC contenders are all massed towards the front of this very reduced front group, which was being led by Bahrain-Merida, but Sky have taken over once again as the gradient bites.


1km remaining from 239km

Primoz Roglic (LottoNL-Jumbo) kicks off the attacking with a fierce acceleration. He opens a small gap.


1km remaining from 239km

Roglic hits the flamme rouge with a sizeable gap, though the gradient kicks again on the approach to the finish.


Nobody is prepared to commit to the chase given the severity of the finale. Sagan and Lopez are among the riders who have been dropped as Sky lead the pursuit of Roglic.


Roglic hits the final 500 metres with what looks to be a winning gap, but Greg Van Avermaet accelerates behind...


Adam Yates launches a brisk acceleration and rips clear from the chasing group. He is closing in on Roglic...


Yates is closing in but he's going to run out of road...


Primoz Roglic (LottoNL-Jumbo) wins stage 3 of Tirreno-Adriatico.


Adam Yates (Mitchelton-Scott) finished strongly but had to settle for second place, just behind Roglic.


The on-form Tiesj Benoot (Lotto Soudal) was third, 6 seconds down on Roglic. Geraint Thomas was 4th at 7 seconds. Rigobert Uran was 10 seconds down in 5th, at the head of a group that included Mikel Landa, Gianni Moscon, Romain Bardet, Wilco Kelderman and Bob Jungels.


Geraint Thomas will move into the blue jersey of race leader. Chris Froome, who finished a little further back, will move up to third overall.




1 Primoz Roglic (Slo) LottoNL-Jumbo 6:17:23
2 Adam Yates (GBr) Mitchelton-Scott 0:00:03
3 Tiesj Benoot (Bel) Lotto Soudal 0:00:06
4 Geraint Thomas (GBr) Team Sky 0:00:07
5 Rigoberto Uran (Col) EF Education First-Drapac p/b Cannondale 0:00:10
6 Mikel Landa (Spa) Movistar Team
7 Gianni Moscon (Ita) Team Sky
8 Romain Bardet (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale
9 Wilco Kelderman (Ned) Team Sunweb
10 Bob Jungels (Lux) Quick-Step Floors


General classification:


1 Geraint Thomas (GBr) Team Sky 10:52:22
2 Greg Van Avermaet (Bel) BMC Racing Team
3 Chris Froome (GBr) Team Sky 0:00:03
4 Damiano Caruso (Ita) BMC Racing Team 0:00:08
5 Michal Kwiatkowski (Pol) Team Sky 0:00:09
6 Bob Jungels (Lux) Quick-Step Floors
7 Wilco Kelderman (Ned) Team Sunweb 0:00:19
8 Davide Formolo (Ita) Bora-Hansgrohe 0:00:30
9 Tom Dumoulin (Ned) Team Sunweb 0:00:33
10 Rigoberto Uran (Col) EF Education First-Drapac p/b Cannondale 0:00:39



Gianni Moscon's performance on this finale is all the more startling considering that he was caught up in the crash that ended Geschke's race and Majka's overall challenge. Some way, somehow, the Italian managed to latch back on and place 7th on the stage.


Stage winner Primoz Roglic (LottoNL-Jumbo) speaks: “I knew I have already lost some sprints in my career and I knew I shouldn't wait until the end and I would go earlier. I just went all out and it was enough,” Roglic says. “I wanted to race for GC of course, we already lost some time in the first team time trial but yesterday the crash happened as we can all see at the end. I stopped, the guys hit me from behind and I damaged my bike. It was over and I had to change my bike then I knew I lost the GC and we try to focus on other things.”


Roglic was caught up in the crash in the finale in Follonica yesterday, and began today's stage some 2:33 off the overall lead. Overnight leader Paddy Bevin safely finished the stage despite his crash in the final hour, but the blue jersey has passed to Geraint Thomas (Sky).


Geraint Thomas (Sky) reacts to taking the blue jersey: “A bit unexpected to be honest, but the team was super strong. We had the plan to get into the bottom of the climb with as many numbers as possible and be in a good position. We did that really well, everyone was really good and then it was just natural selection, see how everyone's legs were and try to go for the stage. I think we can be happy with that, it's nice to get the jersey.”


Saturday’s summit finish at Sarnano Sassotetto is likely to be decisive in the battle for final overall victory. “It will be a big test tomorrow though, completely different and a long climb. First test this season really I think for a lot of the guys, it will be interesting,” Thomas said. “A lot can happen tomorrow, it's a long climb and having strength in numbers is good. Hopefully I'll feel good but if I don't then hopefully Froomey or Kwiato will be on a good day too. We've got options, it's a great position to be in.”



Rudy Molard (Groupama-FDJ) won stage 6 of Paris-Nice, as Luis Leon Sanchez (Astana) retains his overall lead. An early report is here and the live ticker is here.



A report, results and pictures from today's stage of Tirreno-Adriatico are being added to here.





1 Primoz Roglic (Slo) LottoNL-Jumbo 6:17:23
2 Adam Yates (GBr) Mitchelton-Scott 0:00:03
3 Tiesj Benoot (Bel) Lotto Soudal 0:00:06
4 Geraint Thomas (GBr) Team Sky 0:00:07
5 Rigoberto Uran (Col) EF Education First-Drapac p/b Cannondale 0:00:10
6 Mikel Landa (Spa) Movistar Team
7 Gianni Moscon (Ita) Team Sky
8 Romain Bardet (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale
9 Wilco Kelderman (Ned) Team Sunweb
10 Bob Jungels (Lux) Quick-Step Floors


General classification:



1 Geraint Thomas (GBr) Team Sky 10:52:22
2 Greg Van Avermaet (Bel) BMC Racing Team
3 Chris Froome (GBr) Team Sky 0:00:03
4 Damiano Caruso (Ita) BMC Racing Team 0:00:08
5 Michal Kwiatkowski (Pol) Team Sky 0:00:09
6 Bob Jungels (Lux) Quick-Step Floors
7 Wilco Kelderman (Ned) Team Sunweb 0:00:19
8 Davide Formolo (Ita) Bora-Hansgrohe 0:00:30
9 Tom Dumoulin (Ned) Team Sunweb 0:00:33
10 Rigoberto Uran (Col) EF Education First-Drapac p/b Cannondale 0:00:39



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