Giro d'Italia 2015 stage - 19
  • JoshLyons

    Certainly not a “bella in sella” – that’s a face only a mother could love.

  • kaye

    I’ll use this occasion to give respect to Greg Henderson.

    • Shane Ingram

      I was worried we were going to see part 1 of the Astana Giro/Tour double……

      • CB

        Astana are all go and no show, evidenced by the haul of stage wins, continually outnumbering their no. 1 rival and still losing. Well done Contador.

        • Shane Ingram

          But they didn’t lose by much. Landa’s previous best finish in a tour was 28th.
          Anyway, I’m happy Contador has won and I’ll be barracking for the non Astana contenders at the TdF.

    • Abdu

      Yep, every time I see Astana I think of poor Greg saying what we all think but having to apologise for it because the UCI can’t be bothered catching dopers anymore.

  • Bracksy

    I Enjoyed watching Ryder riding the Giro on his motorbike. Hopefully, next year he can upgrade to a Ducati…

    • Guest

      Ryder has been great this week. Unfortunately for him a GT runs for 3 weeks……

      • Shane Ingram

        The closeness of the punch and counter punch between an outnumbered Contador and Astana and what Ryder did in the second half of the tour have made it the best grand tour I’ve followed.

  • Shane Ingram

    The dirt road to the summit of the Finestre looked slippery. Thinking about the power those guys are generating on the climb, did anyone else think that Contador’s stand-up style on a dirt road was putting him at a disadvantage to most riders in regards to managing rear wheel grip ?

  • jules

    i didn’t watch it. was it possible Contador kept a lid on it to conserve energy for the Tour? or was he in genuine trouble?

    • Michele

      Jules, I think he was in genuine trouble. The way Tangert left him on the climb shows he was struggling.

      That said, I think he handled it amazingly. Talking about it this morning with some mates: I don’t reckon too many other riders would’ve stayed that calm.

      Panic could’ve easily set in. But Contador simply managed the time gaps. I don’t believe he was on his absolute limit on the final climb.

      He didn’t go into the red (or at least stay long in it) on the Finestre. He could’ve easily panicked, cooked himself and really lost some time.

      I can’t see him getting up for the TdF. Reckon he’ll blow there.

      The big question is: What the hell were Astana doing last night?

      They obviously were happy to finish 2 and 3rd then go out on a limb and try to win the race.

      They should’ve been working Contador over a lot earlier on the Finestre.

      One real attack was all it took. They did that 3-4 kms earlier I reckon they could’ve won the race. They might not have finished with 2 on the podium though.

      • Robert Merkel

        The other place they screwed up was down the Finestre and on the flat between the Finestre summit and Sestriere. How a group of riders whose interest was pretty much all served by working together couldn’t cooperate was beyond me.

        Have to say that this Giro is one of the more ill-tempered GTs I’ve seen.

        • Michele

          Spot on Robert.

          Once Bertie got to base on final climb and he saw he hadn’t lost a second since cresting the Finestre, he knew he just had to ride a controlled tempo to the finish line.

        • Shane Ingram

          how was their interest served by working together? They were all looking for a stage win and each person in the group was a much more immediate threat to their goal than Contador who was 1:30 back.

      • jakub

        No way that they would have put more than 4 minutes on a experienced rider like Contador yesterday, that’s simply impossible. Contador was struggling but he was at the same time far from going into red, knowing he has huge buffer in GC. The gap remained constant at 1:20-1:30 and I think that towards the end he simply eased off, allowing it to grow to 2:20. According to the interview he was being supplied with time checks all the time, controlling the situation easily.

        • Michele

          It’s extremely unlikely you could. But it’s still worth a try.

          Contador was isolated early on the Finestre. Why not at least try and put him in the red?

          I was hoping for Contador to be forced to do a Salvodelli on the descent.

          A long shot for sure. A Hail Mary pass. Why not give it a go.

          • jakub

            I don’t recall if it was Aru, Landa or their DS, but one of them said that they wanted to attack earlier, but Contador was able to respond to first series of attacks by Hesjedal/Kruijswijk, so they were not sure that he might be struggling.

    • jakub

      Contador admitted that it was not his best day. He also said that it was not hunger knock but more probably cumulative fatigue and a lack of hydration, as his weight dropped a lot the morning before stage.

  • Michele

    I really feel for Kruijswijk.

    All that work and he just misses out on the KOM Jersey.

    Funny how perception works. Kruijswijk has been so much more visible than Visconti, yet the Italian gets the spoils.

    • Dave

      Riding in a bright yellow kit would have to go some way to making himself more visible than Visconti.

  • Winky

    I don’t think of Astana as actually being in the race. Nice win by Ryder.

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