1625 CEST - Vincenzo
'Shark' Nibali arrives at the start gate... 130th of the 141
competitors/survivors of the 2008 Giro. Evgueni Petrov's finishing time:
33'49". Vincenzo Nibali at the startline. Gabriele Bosisio drops to spot
number eight at the second time check. He lost some 20 seconds between Cormano
and the second check. Basically the same thing occurred to Kiryienka earlier.
1627 CEST - Paolo Savoldelli came to the
km. 10.9 check, but his record is far from the top ten. Navigare's Fortunato
Baliani (winner of the "Milan Expo 2015" classification, formerly the Intergiro)
and CSC's Gustav Erik Larsson are off and running. Only 16 riders still have to
show up at the start.
1631 CEST - More bike knights are in the
saddle. It's the turn of Gilberto Simoni, another rider arguably taking on his
last stage of his last Giro d'Italia. LPR's Gabriele Bosisio ends his Giro 2008
campaign with a decent ITT performance: 33'32" to the finish: 14th place, 47
second down on the current stage leader (Pinotti).
Contador's teammate and roommate Toni Colom is cheered by the Spanish fans at
the line, even if the man from Mallorca definitely didn't have his best day
against the clock: 36'33". Croatia's Vlaadimir Miholjevic is better than him,
but not too good: 34'59" Gustav Erik Larsson hasn't a great time at the Cormano
1638 CEST - Paolo Bettini raised his arms
and applauded the crowd that was cheering him. His finishing time was 35'10",
but who really cares about that? Nope, we don't want to think this could have
been his last time at the Giro.
Liquigas' Vincenzo Nibali not playing the Shark at Cormano: his first check
time was 14'04". He's 45"down to Pinotti and Ignatiev at that point in the
stage. Danilo Di Luca took to the startline. His podium hopes evaporated on the
Mortirolo a little over 24 hours ago.
Fortunato Baliani was losing 67 seconds to Pinotti and Ignatiev at the first
time check (!!). Perhaps more unfavourable wind conditions were not a stranger
to that result. Gibo Simoni is driving a hard pace, getting nearer Cormano too.
1646 CEST - The true climbing star of
this Giro, Emanuele Sella, starts his last effort. The route is not playing into
his hands at all today, but his hat-trick of mountain masterpieces was enough,
Il Falco comes to the line with the 20th best time thus far, 01'05" down to
fellow Bergamasco Marco Pinotti. Joaquim Rodriguez had a worse record.
Both Pozzovivo and Simoni were losing plenty of time to the fastest guys at the
Franco Pellizotti is underway too. Only three riders left: Marzio Bruseghin
(who NEVER shaves before an ITT), Riccardo Riccó and Alberto Contador. An unfit
Jurgen van den Broeck - he's having thigh problems - is also going slow today:
his time after 11 kilometres was worse than the top ones by 01'10".
Swedish time trial champion, Gustav Erik Larsson's finishing time is not that
excellent: 34'43". Worse than Pinotti's by close to two minutes. And even worse
than the time scored by the likes of Cavendish.
Di Luca isn't doing fine at the first time check ... but here is Ricco'. The
man in white is in the saddle. Only one rider to go: Alberto Contador.
1656 CEST - 3k to go for Vincenzo Nibali,
that was losing 01'14" to Mikhail Ignatiev after 20 kms. Menchov clocked 13'58"
at the first time check, and didn't make the top 20 places either. The wind must
have taken a different turn for real.
1658 CEST - ALBERTO CONTADOR!! The
Spaniard is off and running as the skies turned grey and even some little rain
drops made a cameo appearance over the route. Vincenzo Nibali's finishing time:
34'44". Close to the 40th time. The Cormano check told us that Emanuele Sella is
not going to win today's stage.
1702 CEST - Contador gained 17 seconds
over Riccò in the first 3 and something kilometres of the stage. The Spaniard
started as fast as he did in the Plan De Corones ITT. Pellizotti scores
14'09" after 11 kilometres. He's doing fine GC-wise, losing just a dozen seconds
to Menchov in the opening miles.
Top Ten at the start today:
1 Alberto Contador AST 89:23:25 Maglia Rosa
2 Riccardo Ricco 0:04 Maglia Bianca
3 Marzio Bruseghin 2:00
4 Franco Pellizotti 2:05
5 Emanuele Sella 2:35 KOM Maglia Verde
6 Denis Menchov 2:47
7 Danilo Di Luca 4:18
8 Jurgen Van den Broeck 4:26
9 Domenico Pozzovivo 5:25
10 Gilberto Simoni 6:40
Marzio Bruseghin's score: 14'13". He's far from the top by close to the
minute. (Okay, the wind conditions have changed, we got it). But notably he has
lost 4 seconds to Pellizotti, and 16 seconds to Menchov. The battle for third
place between the two Italians is basically a tie at the moment.
1708 CEST - Gibo Simoni is 200m from the
finish ... 100m Here he comes: 37'47". He lost 05 minutes and 02 seconds to
Pinotti, but Gibo wasn't aiming for stage victory today. 11 kilometres for
Riccardo Riccò: 14'35". Losing 26" to Pellizotti and 22" to Bruseghin. But at an
earlier check (8 kilometres) his time-deficit to Alberto Contador had gone up to
1712 CEST - Jurgen van den Broeck to the
finish: 35'28". Not the greatest time ever.
Live coverage of the final stage of the
Continues in Part 3
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