93rd Giro d'Italia - Stage 18 Live Part
Levico Terme-Brescia, 151km Live - The final hurrah for
the fast men of the peloton
Gazzetta dello Sport
2010 Giro d'Italia
Jersey Leaders - Stage 17
Maglia Rosa: David Duran Arroyo Caisse
Cadel Evans BMC Racing
KOM: Matthew Lloyd Omega Pharma/Lotto
Porte Saxo Bank
Classification After Stage 17
Thursday 27 May
Stage 18: Levico Terme - Brescia, 151km
© 2010 Gazzetta dello Sport
Giles Belbin: "At last, a nice short and
simple stage for the riders. The stage starts in Levico Terme and runs
south-west to Brescia. It's predominantly flat with just a couple of bumps along
the way. If any sprinters have any energy left after dragging themselves kicking
and screaming over the mountains then they will surely contest the win. If
not.... well we might just have a slow-motion bunch finish."
Stage 18 (Levico Terme-Brescia, 151km) Live Ticker
Weather: Rain, rain, rain......
Non-starters: All 151 riders took the start today.
Today's climbs: No climbs today.
1445 - Welcome to Stage 18 of the Giro. With
the stage today (almost) as flat as a pancake, we can only assume that it will
be a day for a sprint finish - the last time we can say such a line in this
Before the start the Playboy "Playmate" poses beside the car she will ride in
for the pre race caravan. Something else in pink to chase for the riders. Photo © 2010 Fotoreporter
At 151km, this is the shortest non-time trial stage of the race. As a result,
the riders only left Levico Terme around 1400 CET, much later than a usual
start.As has been tradition in this race, the weather is awful, with more
rain greeting the riders.
1446 CET - After a quiet opening 20km, we
now have two men - Oliver Kaisen (Omega Pharma-Lotto) and Alan
Marangoni (Colnago-CSF Inox) - clear of the peloton by one minute.
Marangoni is a former Italian junior Individual Pursuit and Time Trial
champion. Kaisen also had success as an espoir; he took the 2003 U23 Belgian
National Time Trial Championships.
1447 CET - Their lead is now 53
So, who are you betting on today then? I've heard a few people predicting
that Greg Henderson will take the honours in Brescia....
1454 CET - The lead has increased to 2'54".
There have been thunderstorms at the finish in Brescia today.... let's hope
the conditions improve in the next hour or so.
1455 CET - Andre Greipel was present on the lower slopes of the yesterday's
final climb, so he must be feeling relatively O.K. He's not had a great Giro
thus far; can he salvage it by taking the victory this afternoon?
Tazmanian, Saxo Bank's Richie Porte at the start yesterday.
Photo © 2010 Fotoreporter
1457 CET - A few commentators are
predicting that this will be David Arroyo's penultimate day in the Maglia Rosa;
the majority seem to feel he will lose the race lead on Saturday's Queen stage
to the Passo del Tonale. Luckily for the Spaniard and his team, today should be
considerably easier than the past week.
1502 CET - 92km to go. Upfront, our
two leaders have a comfortable gap and the rather tired peloton are not bothered
by them at all right now.
HTC and Columbia are at the front of the main field, however they are not
chasing hard. The weather is still overcast and cold; luckily the rain has
1507 CET - Race radio reported it was
Roman Kireyev (Astana); however it definitely is Oliver Kaisen (Omega
Apologies for any confusion, or any moments of excitement this caused for
any Kireyev followers....
1510 CET - And guess what? The rain
has just started falling again. The latest time check gives our duo
upfront a lead of 3'08".
Kaisen and Marangoni seem to escaped this latest shower, which passed through
earlier judging by the wet roads they find themselves on.
I'm sure the riders could find a better way to relax before three decisive
stages than a ride in cold and wet conditions.
Chris Froome is setting the pace right now. Sky and HTC-Columbia are making
sure the lead for our escapees does not become untouchable.
Tyler Farrar has been the bunch sprint "King" of this race in 2010; however
in his absence Sky will want to take their second victory of this race. Columbia
also have one win to their name; Matt Goss' sprint victory in Cava de' Tirreni
on Stage 9.
1518 CET - Lying before the vital days of
this year's Giro, it is hardly surprising that very little is occurring this
afternoon. Even the RAI TV feed is more interested in the local scenery
1521 CET - Some historical knowledge for
you: Brescia is called "the Lioness of Italy" after an uprising that occurred
there in the spring of 1849 against Austrian oppression.
1523 CET - 80km to go. Our two
leaders have just gone through a beautifully designed town piazza - but I'm not
sure the wet cobbles would have been a pleasant experience for the duo upfront.
1526 CET - Following on from what I said
earlier, the TV feed is now focusing on a pleasure boat passing across Lake
Garda. That shows how much is not happening this afternoon.
1532 CET - The city is rectangular,
similar to many American towns and cities; the streets intersect at right
angles. This has been the case since Roman times.
As a result, the approach to the finish includes a handful of 90 degree
The rain is still falling on the peloton, which could make the finish
slightly dangerous. Two quick tyre changes for a Liquigas and Caisse d'Epargne
riders. Matt Hayman (Sky) also has to replace his rear wheel.
1536 CET - 70km to go. We've not had any
time checks recently, so we can only assume the lead for Marangoni and Kaisen is
still around the three minute mark.
1537 CET - Having said that, I've just
heard the gap is now 2'24". The efforts from Team Sky and Columbia are
definitely keeping our two upfront in check.
1543 CET - Kaisen and Marangoni have
65km to go; one doubts they'll get the finish line alone. The peloton are
darting their way through a tunnel next to a lake; the cut away sections provide
a nice angle to see the Maglia Rosa group from.
Cadel Evans is just trying to get back onto the peloton. I guess he's had a
puncture; trying to catch the field back up through these darting tunnels won't
be too much fun for the current Maglia Rossa. A lot of riders have suffered from
punctures in the last few minutes. Michael Schar, who had been pacing Evans back
up to the peloton, has also had to change his wheel now. I guess the rain has
moved a lot of stones and gravel onto the road.
1549 CET - Kaisen is currently alone, and
he has dropped Marangoni. I wonder if the Italian has had a puncture, or
simply not been able to follow his breakaway companion. Yes, Marangoni has had a
mechanical and is back with Kaisen upfront.
1550 CET - 60km to go. A mechanic is
adjusting something to the rear of Marangoni's bike; possibly his rear-mech.
The last 10km have been full of tunnels, so nothing is there nothing to
report on, there is very little to see too...
1557 CET - Good news!! The sun is
starting to emerge from behind the clouds. Several riders, including Michele
Scarponi, have shed their rain jackets.
That's the end of the excitement for the time being.
1600 CET - It seems that Marangoni's bike
problems have subsided, and him and Kaisen are free to press on. Unfortunately
for them, the peloton are ensuring their lead does not exceed the three minute
As we have 50km remaining, our live coverage continues in
Parcours Preview Week 3
d'Italia - Favorites Preview
- Big Mountains
d'Italia Team & Rider Start List
d'Italia - At a Glance
d'Italia - Start List
Celebrating our tenth year!