42º Giro d´Italia Giovani Under 23
Stage 1: Riccione – Santa Sofia (143.2 km)
British Ethan Hayter reinforced his provisional leadership at the head of the Giro Baby after winning the first online stage of this year’s edition on Friday. A hot day where the temperature made its dent in the cyclists. The member of the British team escaped together with the German Georg Zimmermann (Tirol KTM) and Alexis Brunel (Groupama-FDJ) within the last five kilometres, a phase of the day to which three of the five riders of the Kometa Cycling Team (Sergio García, Edu Pérez-Landaluce and Carlos García) arrived well protected within a first main squad, 17 seconds from the winner. Although not without effort: a fall in the first bars of the Passo delle Forche caused a big stopper and generated an important cut that demanded his good efforts to fill the gap.
Four cyclists, Mattia Baldo, Riccardo Bobbo, Giacomo Cassarà, Marco Cecchini, formed an early breakaway that would lead with up to five minutes of margin over the pack. A well-arranged quartet, interesting for many formations for the management of the day, which managed to reach the climb to Passo delle Forche with a minimum income, assumed by many teams in the face of a hypothetical volata. This crash in the peloton provided the greatest uncertainty of the day for the interests of the U23 formation of the Alberto Contador Foundation, although he managed to solve it.
“We saved the day very well”, explains Sergio García from the finish line. “This first stage had a very fast start and it was quite important to ride in front, in the first positions, to avoid the lashes of the jerks. When the leak formed there was a respite. In the vicinity of the port several teams started to pull very fast in search of a good position in the start of the climb. The fall made us lose a lot of time and we had to work twice as hard to hook again. But we did it”.
Arturo Grávalos and John Stiven Ramírez would reach the finish line in a second group, 2:11 from Hayter. In the general classification Carlos García and Sergio García are the first riders of the team to qualify, in the 103rd and 104th positions respectively, 52 seconds from the pink jersey.
“The cut of the fall has caught several, but some have not been able to fill the gap and have been cut. Super nervous and super fast stage. We continue, with our mind set on the mountain. Already this Saturday we have a very hard stage, with ten kilometers of neutralized. Day by day”, says the Toledo director Rafa Díaz Justo. For this Saturday the Giro Baby proposes a long day of 173.6 kilometers between Bagno di Romagna and Pescia. Despite the fact that in the first kilometres it is necessary to climb the Passo Mandrioli, which does not score points, and that this second stage includes the climbs of the Valico di Croce a Mari (second category, km 49.1) and the Croce di Calenzano (third category, km 109), its development could follow a script similar to that of this first stage.
(automatic translation, sorry for mistakes)
📸 Andrew Peat