The Kometa-Xstra tries to select the group from afar in a hard day that consolidates the Maglia Rosa
Giro d´Italia U23
Stage 7: Barzio-Montespluga (116,5 km)
The second and last high finish of this edition of the Giro d’Italia U23 made the general classification much clearer in favour of the interests of the Maglia Rosa, the British Tom Pidcock, winner in solitary on a finish line where the Spanish Alejandro Ropero, 16th, was the best classified among the riders of a Kometa-Xstra Cycling Team that resisted at the head of the general team classification. The Italian Alessandro Fancellu, who was hampered during the whole race by the three crashes he was involved in during the second stage, did not have his best day and gave up a lot of time.
The team, however, wanted to keep the race alive at the start and the riders took charge of pulling the pack on the first climb. None of the riders managed to break through at that stage. On the descent, and the subsequent flattening of that first climb, the pack broke up thanks to the efforts of the riders from the Foundation’s continental team. At the forefront were 38 cyclists, with all the Kometa-Xstra riders in front. A very interesting race situation that ended midway through the race.
At this point, twelve cyclists, without representation from the team, escaped, reaching a demanding final climb in which they were selected within a dynamic of diminishing differences. The leader arrived from behind to score the victory and underline his leadership.
“The first climb was very fast and on the way down the race was very tight because it was very technical. Thanks to the work of Puppio and Landaluce we managed to leave the group at about fifty units. The ideal would have been to manage to do the first sieve of the day there, but there was more understanding behind than in front and it didn’t work out. A pity”, explains Ropero from Granada. “At least we managed to keep the lead in the overall team standings”.
Edu Pérez-Landaluce, 22nd at the finish: “At the start, at the first port, we got the whole team to work. On the way down, everything was cut off and on the flat, Puppio and I were at full throttle until we were caught from behind by a group that included quite a few men from the general classification. Afterwards, once Montespluga started, it was time to go all the way to the top”.
A 121-kilometre stage starting and finishing in Aprica closes this Saturday’s edition of the Giro d’Italia U23. This is a very demanding stage, with a cumulative climb of over 3,500 metres and the climbs to Teglio, Carona and the Mortirolo (which is crowned 30 kilometres from the finish), before the final climb to the town of Valtellina, which is sure to do a lot of damage. Alejandro Ropero, 13th overall at 6:24 from the lead, is just over a minute from the top ten.
? Isola Press (1)
(automatic translation, sorry for mistakes)