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by Shane Stokes
April 22, 2017
In today’s Daily News Digest: Thomas wins Tour of the Alps as Pinot scoops final stage; Ruffoni takes second successive stage win in Tour of Croatia; Thomas not taking anything for granted in terms of Giro d’Italia; Scarponi ‘curious and confident’ about Giro team leadership; Gaviria savouring Grand Tour debut in Giro; Wellens aiming high for Liège-Bastogne-Liège; La Course organisers announce second day of racing to mixed reactions; USA Cycling announces establishment of Steve Tilford Memorial fund to promote clean sport; Photo gallery: A glimpse into cycling’s past at Paris-Roubaix’s retro market; 2017 UCI Women’s WorldTour: La Flèche Wallonne highlights; 2017 UCI Women’s WorldTour: Focus on Ashleigh Moolman Pasio; Phil Gaimon’s “Worst Retirement Ever,” Episode 2: Mt. Diablo; The Little 500 preview
Although Geraint Thomas’ victory in the Tour of the Alps is an important sign in advance of the Giro d’Italia, he said that he wasn’t presuming anything in terms of the Italian Grand Tour.
“Taking the race and managing to defend a lead for two days was certainly a morale boost and a good indication for the Giro, but a three-week race is an all together different story,” he said.
Thomas had a scare early on when his Team Sky lost Ian Boswell to a crash. He was playing an important role in terms of defending the lead, and being down one man could have been costly. Thankfully the American wasn’t badly hurt.
“It’s good that we managed to finish it off today, in spite of Boswell’s nasty crash at the start,” Thomas said. “The right breakaway went away, and we could ride on Gazprom-Rusvelo’s wheels until the foot of the Monte Bondone. The other teams piled on the pressure on the climb with plenty of attacks, but my decision was to try to control Pinot. That was arguably the most dangerous rival.
“After the climb, Landa just led us all the way to the finish.”
Thomas has proved his value in short stage races, winning Paris-Nice and finishing second in the 2015 Tour de Suisse. However his best Grand Tour result thus far is 15th in both the 2015 and 2016 Tours de France.