Giro d'Italia: Cerny wins stage shortened after rider protest

By Sports Desk October 23, 2020

Josef Cerny won stage 19 of the Giro d'Italia after Friday's leg was shortened by more than 50 per cent following a protest from the peloton. 

The riders were set to contest the longest stage of the race following back-to-back mountain sections but after health concerns were raised they were transported from Morbegno to Abbiategrasso on buses, reducing the distance from 258 kilometres to 124km. 

Asti was expected to host a sprint finish at the end of a flat stage but maglia ciclamino contender Peter Sagan called off the chase of a 14-man breakaway after no one appeared willing to share the workload at the front of the peloton with his Bora-Hansgrohe team-mates. 

Victor Campenaerts forced a split at the front but Cerny pushed again with around 22km remaining and quickly established a lead of around 40 seconds. 

Cerny, who finished fifth in the time trial last Saturday, was able to go solo to secure a first Grand Tour stage win, with Campenaerts unable to close the gap late on. 

"The stage was definitely not [what I expected]. We were standing at the start line and the organiser said we can rest a little bit, it's very nice of him because we had the last three days really heavy, and it was a really hard day also today with the rain," said Cerny. 

"But I'm really happy. I was lucky in the breakaway and we were working together. And then in the final it was just who had better legs. I'm very happy. I still cannot believe it because it was so quick. It was incredible. I cannot describe it." 

Wilco Kelderman retained his grip on the maglia rosa with none of the General Classification contenders able to make in-roads on the short, flat route. 

Tao Geoghegan Hart tried to gain some valuable seconds in the final kilometre but was unable to force a split at the front of the peloton and remains 15 seconds adrift in third.

 

STAGE RESULT 

1. Josef Cerny (CCC Team) 02:30:40
2. Victor Campenaerts (NTT Pro Cycling) +00:18
3. Jacopo Mosca (Trek-Segafredo) +00:26
4. Simon Clarke (EF Pro Cycling) +00:26
5. Iljo Keisse (Deceuninck-Quick-Step) +00:26 

CLASSIFICATION STANDINGS 

General Classification    

1. Wilco Kelderman (Team Sunweb) 80:29:19
2. Jai Hindley (Team Sunweb) +00:12
3. Tao Geoghegan Hart (INEOS Grenadiers) +00:15 

Points Classification    

1. Arnaud Demare (Groupama-FDJ) 221
2. Peter Sagan (Bora-Hansgrohe) 184
3. Joao Almeida (Deceuninck-Quick-Step) 94 

King of the Mountains    

1. Ruben Guerreiro (EF Pro Cycling) 234
2. Thomas De Gendt (Lotto-Soudal) 122
3. Tao Geoghegan Hart (INEOS Grenadiers) 115 

WHAT'S NEXT? 

The penultimate stage is a 190km ride across the Alps including 3,500 metres of vertical altitude gain, meaning there could be plenty of drama in the GC. 

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  • Giro d'Italia: Sagan sprints to second career stage win Giro d'Italia: Sagan sprints to second career stage win

    Peter Sagan claimed only his second Giro d'Italia stage win as he sprinted to victory in Foligno on Monday.

    Sagan's Bora-Hansgrohe team worked superbly throughout a predominantly flat stage 10 from L'Aquila to Foligno to set Sagan up to triumph.

    A seven-time winner of the points classification on the Tour de France, Sagan made sure their efforts did not go to waste.

    He got the better of Fernando Gaviria in a bunch sprint, having won his first Giro stage in an individual effort last year.

    Sagan now has 18 Grand Tour stage wins to his name, putting him in a three-way tie with Rudi Altig and Nino Defilippis for 21st on the all-time list among those with at least one triumph at each event.

    It looked as if Gaviria may be in prime position to claim the stage as UAE Team Emirates led out the sprint with 500 metres to go.

    But it was Sagan who had more left in his legs at the finish and said afterwards: "I have to say thanks to all my team-mates, they did an impressive job. I'm very happy to win a stage like this, it was a great job from all the team."

    Egan Bernal stays in the maglia rosa going into the first rest day of this year's Giro, which will resume on Wednesday with a 162km ride from Perugia to Montalcino back on gravel roads.
     

    STAGE RESULT  

    1. Peter Sagan (Bora-Hansgrohe) 3:10:56
    2. Fernando Gaviria (UAE Team Emirates) same time
    3. Davide Cimolai (Israel Start-Up Nation) "
    4. Stefano Oldani (Lotto Soudal) "
    5. Gianni Vermeersch (Alpecin-Fenix) "

    CLASSIFICATION STANDINGS

    General Classification

    1. Egan Bernal (INEOS Grenadiers) 38:30:17
    2. Remco Evenepoel (Deceuninck-Quick Step) +0.14
    3. Alexandr Vlasov (Astana-Premier Tech) +0.22

    Points Classification

    1. Peter Sagan (Bora-Hansgrohe) 108
    2. Fernando Gaviria (UAE Team Emirates) 91
    3. Davide Cimolai (Israel Start-Up Nation) 91

    King of the Mountains
     
    1. Geoffrey Bouchard (AG2R Citroen Team) 51
    2. Egan Bernal (INEOS Grenadiers) 48
    3. Gino Mader (Bahrain Victorious) 44

  • Bernal climbs into Giro lead after long-awaited stage win Bernal climbs into Giro lead after long-awaited stage win

    Egan Bernal produced a storming finish to win stage nine of the Giro d'Italia – a result good enough to see the Colombian take over as the new race leader.

    Bernal claimed a long-overdue maiden Grand Tour stage triumph following a gruelling 157-kilometre ride from Castel di Sangro to Campo Felice that concluded with an uphill finish on a gravel track.

    Geoffrey Bouchard and Koen Bouwman were involved in a breakaway group but were unable to remain clear, the duo overtaken within 500 metres of the line.

    A determined Bernal pushed hard to claim potentially crucial time in the battle for the maglia rosa, finishing seven seconds clear of Giulio Ciccone and Alexandr Vlasov, who were second and third respectively.

    The 2019 Tour de France winner now has a 15-second cushion over nearest rival Remco Evenepoel in the overall standings.

    "I cannot believe what just happened, I just won my first stage in a Grand Tour," Bernal said in his post-race interview.

    "I made a lot of sacrifices to get where I am now. I was thinking I would do well today but I was not sure whether I could have won the stage.

    "My team-mates had a lot of confidence in me, they told me I could do it: this victory is for them, they really believe in me."

    Attila Valter had held the pink jersey heading into the stage, yet he found the going tough on the final climb and finished almost a minute behind the stage winner.

    Meanwhile, Matej Mohoric was taken to hospital following a dramatic crash during proceedings. Team Bahrain Victorious confirmed the Slovenian would undergo tests and was to be kept under observation, as per the UCI's concussion protocol.

    Mohoric somersaulted over his handlebars after coming off during a descent, with his bike splitting apart after making contact with a crash barrier.


    STAGE RESULT  

    1. Egan Bernal (INEOS Grenadiers) 4:08:23
    2. Giulio Ciccone (Trek-Segafredo) +07secs
    3. Alexandr Vlasov (Astana-Premier Tech) "
    4. Remco Evenepoel (Deceuninck-Quick Step) +10s
    5. Daniel Martin (Israel Start-Up Nation) "

    CLASSIFICATION STANDINGS

    General Classification

    1. Egan Bernal (INEOS Grenadiers) 35:19:22
    2. Remco Evenepoel (Deceuninck-Quick Step) +0.15
    3. Alexandr Vlasov (Astana-Premier Tech) +0.21

    Points Classification

    1. Tim Merlier (Alpecin-Fenix) 83
    2. Giacomo Nizzolo (Team Qhubeka Assos) 76
    3. Elia Viviani (Cofidis) 69

    King of the Mountains
     
    1. Geoffrey Bouchard (AG2R Citroen Team) 51
    2. Egan Bernal (INEOS Grenadiers) 48
    3. Gino Mader (Bahrain Victorious) 44

  • Lafay sprints to Giro stage win as Ewan abandons race Lafay sprints to Giro stage win as Ewan abandons race

    Victor Lafay landed his first grand tour major success by winning stage eight in style for Cofidis at the Giro d'Italia.

    The 25-year-old French rider made a solo dart to the finish line with just under three kilometres remaining, crossing 36 seconds ahead of Francesco Gavazzi (Eolo-Kometa), who edged out Nikias Arndt (Team DSM).

    Saturday's ride from Foggia to Guardia Sanframondi saw no major disruption in the general classification picture, with Attila Valter remaining in the pink jersey, still 11 seconds ahead of Remco Evenepoel.

    The overall leaders finished in the peloton, four minutes and 48 seconds behind Lafay, meaning the Giro remains nicely poised heading into Sunday's stage, which takes the riders from Castel di Sangro to Campo Felice.

    Notably, however, Caleb Ewan abandoned the race, with the Australian sprinter having achieved his targets for the Giro, winning two stages in the first week. He hopes to also win stages at the Tour de France and Vuelta a Espana and had not been expected to complete the Giro, with his team, Lotto Soudal, reporting Ewan quit due to "pain in his knee".

    Lafay said of his first major win as a professional: "It's incredible. It was a very tough day.

    "To take the breakaway was very difficult, but when it's gone the peloton left us seven minutes, so it was good, we could recover a little.

    "The finish was hard, but it's about 10 minutes' effort and that's where I'm the best so I was focused all the day for the support and I'm really happy I did that."

    Speaking on Eurosport, Lafay said he felt Portuguese rider Nelson Oliveira (Movistar) was the big threat from the riders who had pulled clear of the peloton.

    "I knew they were not climbing well but Oliveira I think was the best one, so I kept an eye on him, but I was confident with my legs and I attacked with 3k to go, and I don't believe it now that I just won."

    STAGE RESULT  

    1. Victor Lafay (Cofidis) 4:06:47
    2. Francesco Gavazzi (Eolo-Kometa) +36 secs
    3. Nikias Arndt (Team DSM) +37s
    4. Nelson Oliveira (Movistar) +41s
    5. Giovanni Carboni (Bardiani-CSF-Faizane) +44s

    CLASSIFICATION STANDINGS

    General Classification

    1. Attila Valter (Groupama-FDJ) 31:10:53
    2. Remco Evenepoel (Deceuninck-Quick Step) +0.11
    3. Egan Bernal (INEOS Grenadiers) +0.16

    Points Classification

    1. Tim Merlier (Alpecin-Fenix) 83
    2. Giacomo Nizzolo (Team Qhubeka Assos) 76
    3. Elia Viviani (Cofidis) 69

    King of the Mountains

    1. Gino Mader (Bahrain Victorious) 26
    2. Geoffrey Bouchard (AG2R Citroen Team) 18
    3. Kobe Goossens (Lotto Soudal) 18

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