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Tirreno-Adriatico 2018: Stage 5


Good morning and welcome back to Tirreno-Adriatico! On today’s Stage 5 we are going to tackle 178 difficult kilometers in a “medium mountain” stage from Castelraimondo to Fillotrano, with a special emphasis on remembrance of the late Michele Scarponi.

The stage has started and we are sorry to say that it is raining. 


Today's stage is in homage to Michele Scarponi, who was tragically killed a year ago. It finishes in his hometown. 


Happy Birthday to Tiejs Benoot of Lotto Soudal, turning 24 today? Perhaps he would like to gift himself with a stage win!


After yesterday’s tough and long day in the mountains, the peloton is ready for an easy stage today. Fat chance! We have five ranked climbs on the agenda, including three times up the Fillotrano in the closing 40km or so. “Sunday's stage to Filottrano will be a day of remembrance, with Scarponi's family and friends expected at the finish. The 179km stage passes through the hilltop town twice before the finish, with the Muro di Filottrano touching 15 percent,” according to our race preview.

Just a reminder, here is our top five in GC coming into this stage:

1 Damiano Caruso (BMC) 17:14:49

2 Michel Kwiatkowski (Sky) 0:01

3 George Bennett (LottoNL-Jumbo) 0:11

4 Mikel Landa (Movistar) 0:20

5 Geraint Thomas (Sky) 0:26

In the points classification, we have Jacopo Mosca (Willier Triestina) comfortably ahead of Mikel Landa (Movistar) and Tiejs Benoot (Lotto Soudal).

And just like that, we have a break group! Just give us a minute to gather the names for you.

15km remaining from 178km

After only 15 km, Dario Cataldo (Astana), Igor Boeve (Gazprom-Rusvelo), Kristijan Koren (Bahrain-Merida), Steve Morabito (Groupama-FDJ) and Iljo Keisse (QuickStep Floors) have already built up a lead of 4:40!

The weather forecast for today is relative humidity of 82%, a 50% chance of precipitation, variable wind up to 20 km/h and a minumum temperature of 8°C and a maximum of 14°C.


In the points classification, we have Jacopo Mosca (Willier Triestina) comfortably ahead of Mikel Landa (Movistar) and Tiejs Benoot (Lotto Soudal).

153km remaining from 178km

It is obvious that the peloton is happy to let this group go. After 25 km, the gap has blown up to 5:55.


In the race for the KOM title, Nicola Bagioli (Nippo-Vini Fantini) has a large lead over Mosca and Landa.

We have mountains and rain in our race, but there are more mountains and lots more rain over in Paris-Nice! You can follow that race on Cyclingnews too, of course!


Only 147 riders finished the stage yesterday, out of 153 who started the race. However, three of them are from Team Sunweb. Tom Dumoulin and Simon Geschke both were injured in crashes, while Soren Kragh Andersen was ill.

Yesterday’s dramatic stage saw Geraint Thomas lose the race lead to former teammate Mikel Landa. Catch up on everything that took place and all the changes that happened in our race report.

Bora-hansgrohe moves up to the front of the peloton as the gap has once again made a major jump -- 6:20 after only 45 km. 


Happy Mothers Day to those celebrating today!


A crash took Tom Dumoulin (Sunweb) out of the race. One might say that his early season has probable gone the opposite of how he had planned, what with major mechanical problems, illness and injuries. He is however still looking to ride the Giro d’Italia in defence of his title.



Race organizers purposefully designed this stage in tribute to the late Michele Scarponi. It will be an emotional day for his former teammates. 


The 37-year-old Scarponi died last April when hit by a vehicle whilst training near his home. He had just been named to lead Astana in the Giro d'Italia.


#TirrenoAdriatico after more than 50km of racing, the breakaway’s advantage is sitting at 6’30”.

@BMCProTeam Sun, 11th Mar 2018 11:56:43

Let’s take a look at those in the break group. Dario Cataldo, 32, has been a pro since 2007. He has put in time with Liquigas, QuickStep and Sky before joining Astana in 2015. Wins have been far and few between, but he did win a stage in the Vuelta a Espana in 2012. That same year he won the Italian national time trial title.

He also took the first mountain points in today's stage. 

The first intermediate sprint went to Morabito ahead of Boeve, Keisse and Cataldo.

Igor Boeve of Gazprom-Rusvelois a 28-year-old Russian who started out with the Continental Itera-Kutusha team in 2012. That same year he won the GC in the Five Rings of Moscow.


The field evidently realized that a nearly-seven minute gap was perhaps a tad too large, and has started with a more serious chase. The gap is now down to 5:44


Slovenian Kristijan Koren, 31, started his career with Liquigas in 2010. He was then with Cannondale-Garmin before joining Bahran Merida this year.

teve Morabito, a 35-year-old Swiss, started out with Phonak in 2006. That year he won a stage at the Tour Suisse. He has been with the FDJ team since 2015.

Iljo Keisse, 35, is a multiple talent, as he can point to many wins on both the road and the track. Amongst those road wins is a Giro d’Italia stage, and on the track, he has won countless Six Day races.

The break group is approaching the second and last intermediate sprint, which is closely followed by the feed zone.


.@IljoKeisse: "I love riding in the breakaway, it's better than in the peloton. Really enjoying it."…

@quickstepteam Sun, 11th Mar 2018 12:30:03

And at the intermediate sprint, it was Morabito, Boev, Koren and Cataldo.


George Bennett of LottoNL-Jumbo was angry at finishing “only” third on yesterday’s mountaintop finish. However, he was pleasantly suprised to find out that he is now seventh in GC, and only 22 seconds off of a podium place.

Dan Benson is at this race for us, and had a little chat with Geraint Thomas before the stage started. The Sky rider said, “It would be nice to take back time but it’s a good day for Sagan, so it could be pretty controlled. We’ll see. With the rain it could also add a different element. Unless I get time back today I’m not going to get that much time back on GC to win. It’s only 10km, so if it all stays like it is then the best I can hope for is fourth really. I could maybe take ten seconds at most when everyone has something to race for.”

You will of course remember that Thomas was leading the race yesterday, when he suffered the frustration of a mechanical failure in the finale. 


88km remaining from 178km

The gap continues to drop, however slowly. With 88km to go, it is down to 4:30.


bora is still leading the chase, hoping no doubt for a Sagan win today. It looks as if it is not raining. 


BMC’s Damiano Caruso took the leader’s blue jersey after the Stage 1 team time trial, lost it the next day, and now has it back again. He has the narrowest of leads though, exactly one second over Sky’s Michal Kwiatkowski. The Italian is happy with it though, and do his best to keep it another day.

A Dimension Data rider has crashed, but we know no details.


70km remaining from 178km

With 70km to go, the gap is at 4:24. Looking at the peloton, it is clear they are not in full chase mode -- not yet, at any rate.


WE have some very serious climbing at the moment. In a town, with lots of traffic signs which the riders have to avoid. 


A handful of riders have jumped from the field, but have only a minimal gap.


Boev is no longer able to stay with the lead group and has been dropped. 


IN 2 km, the now-four leaders will hit the next ranked climb, the Ossimo.


The peloton is still -- not really taking their time, but also not really rushing. They still have 61 km and lots of climbing, so no hurry.


That was quite some stage yesterday, with a lot of dramatic developments – Geraint Thomas falling victim to mechanical problems, Tom Dumoulin falling and dropping out, and George Bennett finishing third on the stage. Our Dan Benson and Steve Ferrand talk about it all on our podcast.

Cataldo and Morabito have a slight lead as they go up the cobbled town road up the Osimo.


Cataldo takes the points ahead of Morabito.


And of course if you want to take a look back at everything that happened yesterday, here is the highlights video.

It is not only not raining, but the sun is coming out! Still lots of wet patches on the road, though.


BMC has moved to the front of the peloton. With 50 km to go , the gap is just over 4 minutes.


There are indeed five BMC riders at the head of the field, picking up the pace and cutting down the gap. Caruso, of course, is safely tucked in amongst his teammates. 


Adam Yates moves back to the team car to get rid of his shoe covers. Not the easiest thing to remove them without stopping.


46km remaining from 178km

BMC's work is paying off. The gap is now down to 3:34.


Fabio Aru (UAE Team Emirates) put in a big attack on the finishing climb yesterday, and while it wasn’t enough for the stage win, it was enough to make him feel good. “It was a good stage for me. I feel better and better and I can feel my form is coming,” he said.



We are starting to get some gaps in the peloton.


The gap continues to drop and is now 2:26. Not the best time for Fabio Aru to puncture, but then again, there is never really a good time for that.


Keisse has to drop from teh lead group now, leaving only 3. Further back, Uran is being brought back up through the team cars. 


Koren is having trouble staying up with Cataldo and Morabito. 35.5km to go and 1:46.


Cataldo take the next mountain ranking.


Mechanical for Nibali.


33.3km and 1:32. 


Koren was able to hang with Cataldo and Morabito, and Keisse was just able to catch up again. 

Nibali is a half a minute behind the field. 


We have come to associate ‘marginal gains’ with Team Sky, but Mikel Landa, who left Sky for Movistar, claims to have found them at the Spanish team. And they helped him win yesterday, he says.

The gap is now down to one minute.


Paris-Nice has come to an end. The final stage goes to David de la Cruz, with the GC title going not to Yates but to Mauricio Soler. 


How about we make that MARC Soler.....


24 km left and 40 seconds. In the sunshine! 


The King is dead, long live the King. Tom Dumoulin may have crashed out of this race, but Sunweb still has Wilco Kelderman. He is in fact now third overall, only 11 seconds down.

Will we have as wild a finish today as we did yesterday? Listen to our experts Dan Benson and Steve Ferrand talk about what happened on our podcast. 


With only 20km to go, the field has the leaders ini its sights. Keisse sits up and drops back while Caltado pulls away from the other two.


Froome looks to be at the back of the peloton.


Froome does not look to be riding well. Mechanical? Ill? Not in form? Our imagination?


Caleb Ewan of Mitchelton-Scott dropped out along the way today. He would of course not have had a chance today, but tomorrow's expected sprint finish would have been a good opportunity for him.


Cataldo hangs doggedly on to his lead. 


BMC still leading the peloton as they all enter the closing circuit for the last time. Only 15 seconds for Cataldo.


Looks like the peloton has shredded in that last lap, with lots of smaller groups. We expect the pace to kick up yet another notch now.


Cataldo would have loved to win this stage for his teammate and friend Scarponi, but it was not to be. He is caught by the field with 11 km to go.


It is not BMC that led the catch of Cataldo, but Sky. Remember, their Kwiatkowski is only one second done. And who do we see there lurking near the front? World champion Peter Sagan!


10km as Mitchelton-Scott now takes over the lead work. 


Movistar moves up to do some lead work.


The lead work seems to change every few minutes, now MitcheltonScott again.


Froome punctures with 5.5km to go.


Froome and a BMC rider are working their way through the team cars, having a little chat along the way.


Up they go! This is not easy for any of them!


Adam Yates jumps o nths ascent with just under 4 km to go.


Yates pulls away.


Yates continues to build up a very good gap.


Landa loses his patience and attacks out of the group. Yates has 18 seconds with 2.8km to go.


Landa falls back and lets Bora-hansrohe take over. A very high pace here! 


Three Bora riders up front, with Sagan on roughly 10th place. 


Lutsenko attacks from the group of maybe 15-20 riders.


Yates takes 17 seconds into the final kilometer.


But Lutsenko is moving up quickly.


It is all up towards teh finish line, but not very steep.


Yates will have this.


Yates takes the win of the fifth stage with a significant gap over the field.


It is not yet clear who has taken second or third. 


It looks however like Sky took places 2-5.

The rest of the field now comes over the line in dribs and drabs.


So much for that prediction. Second place goes to Peter Sagan, and third to Kwiatkowski.


That gives Kwiatkowski the overall lead with Caruso second and Landa third.


The top ten of today's stage:

1 Adam Yates (GBr) Mitchelton-Scott 04:16:35

2 Peter Sagan (Svk) Bora-Hansgrohe 00:00:07

3 Michal Kwiatkowski (Pol) Team Sky

4 Tiesj Benoot (Bel) Lotto Soudal

5 Rigoberto Uran (Col) EF Education First-Drapac p/b Cannondale

6 Geraint Thomas (GBr) Team Sky

7 Mikel Landa (Spa) Movistar Team

8 Jaime Roson (Spa) Movistar Team

9 Romain Bardet (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale

10 Damiano Caruso (Ita) BMC Racing Team  


And the GC after today's stage:

1 Michal Kwiatkowski (Pol) Team Sky 21:31:28

2 Damiano Caruso (Ita) BMC Racing Team 00:00:03

3 Mikel Landa (Spa) Movistar Team 00:00:23

4 Geraint Thomas (GBr) Team Sky 00:00:29

5 Rigoberto Uran (Col) EF Education First-Drapac p/b Cannondale 00:00:34

6 Adam Yates (GBr) Mitchelton-Scott 00:00:36

7 Davide Formolo (Ita) Bora-Hansgrohe 00:00:37

8 Tiesj Benoot (Bel) Lotto Soudal 00:00:39

9 George Bennett (NZl) LottoNL-Jumbo 00:00:41

10 Jaime Roson (Spa) Movistar Team 00:00:47

Now here's a surprise: Steve Ferrand tells us that Chris Froome finished 8:15 down. 


Team Sunweb is really on the bad side of luck recently. They report that Wilco Kelderman crashed twice today, finished in the last group, and is complaining of shoulder pain.

Everything went right last year but this year nothing is going their way, it seems. 


Be sure to join us again tomorrow for a sprint stage, followed by the closing time trial -- which may well decide our final overall winner.


Its now 6-6 in the Yates vs Yates battle #Tirreno #ParisNice

@TourDeJose Sun, 11th Mar 2018 15:11:27

Here was Chris Froome finishing the stage. He had a mechanical issue and then rode his own pace to the finish line. 


Today's stage was dedicated to Michele Scarponi, who dies just after this race finished last year. The parrot that became so famous for riding with him on his training rides, Frankie, was there at the finish. 


If you haven't seen what has happened at Paris-Nice today then you can find out with our report here.


Michal Kwiatkowski had this to say after the stage.


"I was racing for the stage win but also with the GC in mind, knowing that time bonuses could put me in the lead. Now I hope we won't have any bad luck tomorrow and will be in the same situation before the ITT.”


Michal Kwiatkowski wearing the blue jersey. He has two more stages to defend it.


That's all from Tirreno-Adriatico today. Catch up on all the action in our report here and we'll have more live coverage for you tomorrow. 


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