Giro d’Italia Stage 6

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Over the past couple of days I’ve had a few emails from cycling fans asking about and commenting on the poor placings of the Aussie riders at the Giro this year compared to last. While it’s definitely true that the Aussies had an outstanding Giro last year, circumstances were much different. And there is much more to the story than is told on the results sheet.

If you look at the General Classification of the Giro so far, Richie Porte holds Australia’s highest placing at 120th. Very different from last year at this time where he found himself in a position to go for Pink. No, not good, but is it even relevant? The difference this year is that he’s 100% committed to helping Contador win this year’s Giro. In fact, every single one of the Aussie riders at the Giro are in support roles and results don’t mean anything to them. Making it through the day with good legs once they’ve done their job is what matters.

A lot of cycling fans look at a results sheet and determine who went well and who didn’t. In my opinion, anything outside of the top 10-15 in a sprint stage and top 20-25 in a mountain stage are irrelevant (I’m talking about stage racing – one day races are often different). Anything below that is of no importance. These guys have been fetching waterbottles, chasing down breaks, controlling the bunch, and keeping their leaders out of the wind. Once they’ve done that, they’re just rolling past the finish line making sure they’re under the time cut. 50th place or 200th place…it makes no difference.

If there was one that I could change about cycling it would be that these guys get some credit on the podium. Having the winner up there alone getting kisses from the podium girls and spraying champaign misrepresents what actually happened out there on the road. The team should be along side the winner in the podium presentations. Will it ever happen – I highly doubt it. Yes, there is a Teams Classification, but this doesn’t really mean anything for the teams fighting for GC.

Cam’s Giro Diary

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Well another day over 200km. They love keeping us fit in this tour. Today was up and down all day with no real massive climbs but no flats either. The finish was a slight drag for the final 10km so the stage suited a strong rider with a good sprint.
In the end Ventoso continued his good season with a win over Petacchi. Our own man David Millar has some fantastic form with another attack in the finale and Christophe Le Mevel is riding awesome still holding down fourth on the overall classification only 5 seconds away from the lead.
As for me, I have seen much better days and hope that I don’t feel this way again this Giro. Right from the start I was under pressure to hang with the group and the whole day was spent being a little uncomfortable with a bad saddle sore that I hope goes away soon.
The day before was tough on the white gravel roads and with a big effort on the front defending the leaders jersey of David I’m sure this contributed to the sore legs. Anyway I rode in with the back group but still finished the stage and will keep on trucking tomorrow.
A short 110km stage is install which sounds nice but it will be very hard. It is the first mountain top finish and being such a short stage the time that you can afford to lose on the leaders will not be a lot so a hard day its going to be. I’m hoping a good massage tonight will fix the legs somewhat to get over the hill.
Stay tuned.

Final Kilometers


courtesy of Veeral Patel and RCS

Stage 6 Results

1 Francisco José Ventoso Alberdi (Spa) Movistar Team 5:15:39
2 Alessandro Petacchi (Ita) Lampre – ISD
3 Roberto Ferrari (Ita) Androni Giocattoli
4 Danilo Di Luca (Ita) Katusha Team
5 Davide Appollonio (Ita) Sky Procycling
6 Michele Scarponi (Ita) Lampre – ISD
7 Christophe Le Mevel (Fra) Team Garmin-Cervelo
8 Gerald Ciolek (Ger) Quickstep Cycling Team
9 Paolo Tiralongo (Ita) Pro Team Astana
10 Ruggero Marzoli (Ita) Acqua & Sapone

91 Richie Porte (Aus) Saxo Bank Sungard 0:00:34
173 Matthew Wilson (Aus) Team Garmin-Cervelo 0:13:39
183 Mark Renshaw (Aus) HTC-Highroad 0:17:29
186 Robbie McEwen (Aus) Team RadioShack
187 Brett Lancaster (Aus) Team Garmin-Cervelo
188 Cameron Meyer (Aus) Team Garmin-Cervelo

General Classification after Stage 6

1 Pieter Weening (Ned) Rabobank Cycling Team 20:15:12
2 Kanstantsin Sivtsov (Blr) HTC-Highroad 0:00:02
3 Marco Pinotti (Ita) HTC-Highroad
4 Christophe Le Mevel (Fra) Team Garmin-Cervelo 0:00:05
5 Pablo Lastras Garcia (Spa) Movistar Team 0:00:22
6 Vincenzo Nibali (Ita) Liquigas-Cannondale 0:00:24
7 Michele Scarponi (Ita) Lampre – ISD 0:00:26
8 Steven Kruijswijk (Ned) Rabobank Cycling Team 0:00:28
9 Alberto Contador Velasco (Spa) Saxo Bank Sungard 0:00:30
10 Jose Rodolfo Serpa Perez (Col) Androni Giocattoli 0:00:33

120 Richie Porte (Aus) Saxo Bank Sungard 0:19:47
179 Mark Renshaw (Aus) HTC-Highroad 0:41:3
183 Matthew Wilson (Aus) Team Garmin-Cervelo
190 Robbie McEwen (Aus) Team RadioShack 0:45:30
191 Cameron Meyer (Aus) Team Garmin-Cervelo 0:46:19
192 Brett Lancaster (Aus) Team Garmin-Cervelo 0:47:00
194 Graeme Brown (Aus) Rabobank Cycling Team 0:52:55

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