Giro d’Italia U23
Stage 6: Dimaro Folgarida and Pergine Valsugana (120.7 km)
Luxembourg’s Michel Ries consolidated his ninth place overall in the Giro Baby after a crazy day. The stage, frenetic, vibrant, with more than 54 kilometers covered in its first hour and more than 48 during the second, was won by the American Sean Bennett (Hagens Berman Axeon). Colombian Alejandro Osorio (Team Colombia), for his part, recovered the pink jersey. The very high average, an average of 47.3 km/h, established the winner, condensing the intensity and difficulty, perhaps unexpected, that this journey to the outskirts of Trento brought. Matteo Moschetti would lose the red jersey of the overall points, which passed behind the Italian Giovanni Lonardi.
This sixth stage of the U23 Giro was marked by a quick, fleeting start, full of combativeness, and by a runaway of four important riders that began to take shape in the first of the two climbs of the day. At the Madrano ramps, the Australian Robert Stannard (Mitchelton-Scott) and the American Bennet attacked. There were just under 60 kilometres to go before the end. Shortly afterwards they would be joined by Mark Donovan (Team Wiggins) and Osorio. The madness was unleashed.
The dozen seconds on a platoon that, in turn, was also breaking down would begin to grow. If it was a fortnight at 50, 40 was about the minute and 25 was a caress for both of us. The SEG of leader Steve Williams could neither control nor stifle this revolution. The breakaway would come with almost two and a half minutes (2:25) over the leader’s group. Michel Ries arrived in that first and small group and he was very good at it.
“Transition days! Give us mountain days before one like this!”jokes director Jesús Hernández. “It was a very fast stage, not stopping for a second. It has been a very hard day, with the presence of the general’s men. It will probably take its toll on the mountain stages to come. For our part, very happy with Michel. He was ahead, attentive, with the first ones, and has managed to save the day and stay in the fight,” he says.
“It’s been going out and there was a descent of 30 or 40 kilometres; people started to cut down, it was raining,…. This is cycling and it’s days that pass, days that are coming even though you might think it’s going to be an easier day. On the contrary, you have to have a greater concentration, because in one of these days you can leave your life. Michel was able to save the day. Matteo, Patrick and I ended up in a group. Now it’s time to think about tomorrow’s stage, but today has been a day of a lot of mental wear and tear,” explains Isaac Canton, who is brand new and reddish during the competition. “Everything’s broken in a repechage zone between 60 and 70 kilometers. I was close to being able to go with Ries. We were six riders down to 20 or 30 seconds, but in the end we couldn’t connect and we ended up with a bigger group,” said Diego Pablo Sevilla. “It’s been crazy,” sums up Michel Ries, who is now 3:10 behind Osorio in the general standings.
The mountain returns to the Giro Baby this Thursday for its seventh stage. The race reaches the Pian delle Fugazze after 136.9 kilometres that start in the town of Schio. Beyond two smaller mountain passes, the day is marked by the final climb: 11.3 km at an average of 7.2% which will certainly put the fight for the pink jersey back into play.
(automatic translation, sorry for mistakes)
? Andrew Peat