Giro d'Italia Stage 11 – Route map, how to watch as Cavendish seeks 17th win

After Biniam Girmay’s historic victory on Tuesday, another chance for the fast men arrives on Stage 11. Only this time, Mark Cavendish (Quick-Step Alpha Vinyl) and Caleb Ewan (Lotto Soudal) will expect to feature.

The flat-track bullies were cruelly distanced by their more versatile, but slower, rivals during the early hills on Stage 10, but there should be no repeat on the pan-flat run from Santarcangelo di Romagna to Reggio Emilia.

Cavendish is chasing his second win at this year’s Giro, and his 17th in total, while Ewan is yet to get off the mark in Italy after a frustrating start.

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Opinion: Van der Poel’s magnificent gesture enhances significance of Girmay’s historic win

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The pair were pipped by Arnaud Demare (Groupama-FDJ) in their last sprint opportunity on Stage 6, with the Frenchman currently leading the race for the maglia ciclamino.

Juan Pedro Lopez (Trek-Segafredo) will again start the day in pink and should have an easy day.

HOW CAN I WATCH THE GIRO ON TV AND LIVE STREAM?

Each and every stage will be broadcast in its entirety on Eurosport, discovery+ and GCN+, bookended by The Breakaway, presented by Orla Chennaoui and Dan Lloyd. Rob Hatch and Hannah Walker will be in the commentary box with regular contributions from pundits Robbie McEwen, Sean Kelly and Adam Blythe, with Bradley Wiggins doing his thing on the back of a motorbike.

WHEN IS STAGE 11?

It’s an earlier start! Tune in from 11:00-17:00 BST to watch Stage 11 of the Giro d’Italia. Watch the action on Eurosport 1, with uninterrupted coverage on discovery+

STAGE 11 PROFILE AND ROUTE MAP

https://i.eurosport.com/2021/11/11/3252471.jpg

– – –

Stream the Giro d’Italia live and on-demand on discovery+. You can also watch all the action live on eurosport.co.uk.

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‘I’m in awe’ – Girmay lauded after seeing off Van der Poel in historic win

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‘Take the right way!’ – Girmay’s dream almost unravels after going wrong way

13 HOURS AGO

Giro d'Italia Stage 11 – Route map, how to watch as Cavendish seeks 17th win

After Biniam Girmay’s historic victory on Tuesday, another chance for the fast men arrives on Stage 11. Only this time, Mark Cavendish (Quick-Step Alpha Vinyl) and Caleb Ewan (Lotto Soudal) will expect to feature.

The flat-track bullies were cruelly distanced by their more versatile, but slower, rivals during the early hills on Stage 10, but there should be no repeat on the pan-flat run from Santarcangelo di Romagna to Reggio Emilia.

Cavendish is chasing his second win at this year’s Giro, and his 17th in total, while Ewan is yet to get off the mark in Italy after a frustrating start.

Giro d’Italia

Opinion: Van der Poel’s magnificent gesture enhances significance of Girmay’s historic win

10 HOURS AGO

The pair were pipped by Arnaud Demare (Groupama-FDJ) in their last sprint opportunity on Stage 6, with the Frenchman currently leading the race for the maglia ciclamino.

Juan Pedro Lopez (Trek-Segafredo) will again start the day in pink and should have an easy day.

HOW CAN I WATCH THE GIRO ON TV AND LIVE STREAM?

Each and every stage will be broadcast in its entirety on Eurosport, discovery+ and GCN+, bookended by The Breakaway, presented by Orla Chennaoui and Dan Lloyd. Rob Hatch and Hannah Walker will be in the commentary box with regular contributions from pundits Robbie McEwen, Sean Kelly and Adam Blythe, with Bradley Wiggins doing his thing on the back of a motorbike.

WHEN IS STAGE 11?

It’s an earlier start! Tune in from 11:00-17:00 BST to watch Stage 11 of the Giro d’Italia. Watch the action on Eurosport 1, with uninterrupted coverage on discovery+

STAGE 11 PROFILE AND ROUTE MAP

https://i.eurosport.com/2021/11/11/3252471.jpg

– – –

Stream the Giro d’Italia live and on-demand on discovery+. You can also watch all the action live on eurosport.co.uk.

Giro d’Italia

‘I’m in awe’ – Girmay lauded after seeing off Van der Poel in historic win

11 HOURS AGO

Giro d’Italia

‘Take the right way!’ – Girmay’s dream almost unravels after going wrong way

14 HOURS AGO

GC hopeful Bilbao wiped out in ‘big crash’ on Stage 9

Pello Bilbao (Bahrain Victorious) was among riders caught up in a big crash during the early stages of Stage 9 at the Giro d’Italia.

The Spaniard, who started Sunday’s five-star stage ninth in the general classification, was one of six riders upended by the innocuous incident in the middle of the peloton.

Jorge Arcas (Movistar) was also caught up in the crash on the run from Isernia to Blockhaus, a day after being involved in the four-up sprint in Saturday’s finish in Naples.

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“It’s a blow if Bilbao has to take time to get back on or he’s injured because we’ve seen the form he’s in,” said Eurosport commentator Adam Blythe, who branded it a “big crash”.

“Brilliant in the Tour of the Alps and if he’s injured it’s going to be a blow for the team.”

Bilbao is expected to battle with Mikel Landa for Bahrain Victorious leadership duties at the Giro. Bilbao was 2’00” off pacesetter Juan Pedro Lopez (Trek-Segafredo) prior to Sunday’s start, with Landa in 13th and 2’15” off the pace.

A double ascent of the fearsome Blockhaus, including the tougher side of the climb on the grind to the finish, was expected to inject some much-needed spice into the battle for pink.

Maxing out at 14%, with an average gradient of over 8% from top to bottom, the Blockhaus will leave riders wanting to “to strap a rocket onto their bums”, according to Blythe.

– – –

Stream the Giro d’Italia live and on-demand on discovery+. You can also watch all the action live on eurosport.co.uk.

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08/05/2021 AT 15:31

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19/05/2019 AT 15:20

Giro d’Italia Stage 9 LIVE – Yates dropped early on Blockhaus showdown

Cycling

Giro d’Italia | Stage 9

11:15-18:00

15:50 – Superb ride from Juanpe Lopez

9km to go: The pink jersey is still in this main group which is really impressive. He reminds me of Joao Almeida in his debut ride in 2020 when he wore the pink jersey for two weeks on his way to a fourth-place overall. Pello Bilbao is battling on at the back, while the likes of Bardet, Formolo, Martin, Landa, Valverde, Hindley and Kamna are still here. Vincenzo Nibali, too. Ineos has Sivakob and Porte on the front for Carapaz. But Landa is right in the mix while Yates is limiting his losses behind.

Giro d’Italia

GC hopeful Bilbao wiped out in ‘big crash’ on Stage 9

3 HOURS AGO

15:46 – Kelderman the latest GC rider to pop

10km to go: Wilco Kelderman is off the back and now Pello Bilbao looks in trouble… The Spaniard crashed earlier today and he’s on the back with three Bahrain Victorious teammates. Koen Bouwman, the blue jersey, is going backwards. There are about 25 riders left in this GC group. Yates is rallying at 22 seconds so it’s not all over for the Briton just yet.

15:43 – Ciccone, Dumoulin, then Yates all get dropped

11km to go: And the damage is being done early on with local rider Guilio Ciccone being distanced before Tom Dumoulin fades fast to confirm that it is stage wins, not the GC, which he is targetting. But then comes the big surprise with the elastic snapping for Simon Yates of BikeExchange-Jayco. It’s Rui Costa of UAE doing the pace-setting although he’s followed by the Ineos train…

15:38 – All over for the breakaway as Carapaz takes a bonus second

14km to go: Dombrowsky, the last man standing, is caught before the second intermediate sprint at Roccamorice at the foot of the final ascent of Blockhaus (13.6km at 8.4%). And it’s Ineos who lead the pack over the line with Richard Carapaz crossing in third place to take a single bonus second. It could – perhaps should – have been three seconds for the Ecuadorian, but perhaps he feels there are bigger fish to fry.

The last time the Giro came to Blockhaus was in 2017 when Nairo Quintana took the win on a day Mikel Landa and Geraint Thomas crashed just before the clmb thanks to a badly parked race motorcycle.

15:31 – Dombrowski the lone leader

18km to go: It’s the American from Astana who now leads the race after Dombrowski caught and past Rosa, who now rides 22 seconds down with Peters. They are the last three of the escapees left ahead of the pack, who are now just 30 seconds down on the front. UAE Team Emirates have now come to the front alongside Ineos Grenadiers…

15:29 – Tesfatsion back on his bike

20km to go: We’ve had confirmation that the Eritrean has noth withdrawn after that horror crash on the descent of the Passo Lanciano. Here’s what happened when he left the road at high speed and ended up in a bush.

Tesfatsion crash: Terrifying moment Eritrean flies off road and into bushes

15:23 – Ineos Grenadiers closing in

22km to go: Rosa’s closest challenger now is Dombrowski after the American drops Peters and Sepulveda on this climb that precedes the final official climb to the finish. Ineos have six riders on the front of the pack as they pull the peloton to within 1:10 of the lone leader. You have to feel for the gruppetto, who would have been aware that a slight turn off the top of the Passo Lanciano would have taken them to the finish at Blockhaus; instead, they have to tackle the long descent before the road sweeps up the other side of the mountain.

15:12 – Mechanical for Wilco Kelderman

28km to go: Problem for the Dutchman, who is Bora Hansgrohe’s main GC leader. He needs to swap bikes after a puncture and will have a big fight to get back with the peloton ahead of the final climb. Rosa, meanwhile, has finished the descent and is already going uphill again. There’s another 15km of uphill before the final climb officially starts. It’s going to be a tough final hour for everyone.

15:09 – Still no news on Tesfatsion

31km to go: He was on his feet but showed no desire to get back on his bike – which is hardly a surprise given the huge scare he just had. Diego Rosa would have seen that happen just in front of him which makes his continued descent all the more impressive: the Italian is 25 seconds clear of Peters, Dombrowski and Sepulveda as he approaches the final section of this fast, fast, fast downhill. The peloton is 2:15 back and primed to pounce.

15:02 – Oh no! Terrible fall for Tesfatsion

37km to go: Complete disaster for the Eritrean who completely misjudges a corner and leaves the road at high speed and then crashes over his handlebars and into some bushes. That could have been far, far worse given the speed that he was travelling at. He really misjudged that and came into the corner in the apex and way too far. He braked too late and his wheels locked up – and luckily he continued his trajectory and found a cap between a wall and the barriers before being thrown into the bushes. A soft landing but that could still be the end of his race.

14:58 – Rosa into the virtual blue jersey

43km to go: Tesfatsion does the honourable thing and lets Rose lead them over the Passo Lanciano to pocket another 40pts. That puts the Italian onto 83pts in the KOM standings and so he’s surpassed Koen Bouwman’s 68pts in the mountains classification. Barring something very strange, Rosa will be the new maglia azzura tonight. Behind, Dombrowski has caught Sepulveda and Peters; they ride 50 seconds in arrears with the pack now at 3:05.

14:50 – Dombrowski chases on his own

46km to go: Rosa and Tesfatsion are around 2.5k from the summit of the Passo Lanciano and have 30 seconds over Peters and Sepulveda with Joe Dombrowski at 50 seconds after striking out alone from the chase group. Back on the front of the pack it’s still Ineos Grenadiers setting the tempo through Salvatore Puccio. They trail the front by 3:15.

14:40 – Rosa goes clear with Tesfatsion

49km to go: The Italian catches and them almost instantly passes the leaders as he rides off in pursuit of the KOM points which could put him in the blue jersey tonight. Tesfatsion manages to return to his back wheel but, once again, he shakes his head when Rosa asks him to come forward. The young Eritrean isn’t making many friends today… But he’s riding a very canny race. We all thought Biniam Girmay would be the first Eritrean and black African to win a stage in the Giro – but we may have to revise that opinion this afternoon…

14:35 – Rosa closing in on leaders, Landa in trouble

50km to go: Diego Rosa has kicked clear of the chasers in pursuit of the leading trio. What’s the bet he’s now regretting that flat solo effort in the breakaway three days ago? The Italian is 10 seconds down with the others at 45 seconds. The peloton, meanwhile, is at 2:25 with Mikel Landa off the back after the mechanical. The Spaniard is being paced back by his Bahrain Victorous teammates. Pello Bilbao crashed earlier so it’s been a tough day for the team.

“What are they like in this breakaway,” says Sean Kelly, “it’s like watching a junior race.” The king isn’t impressed with the three leaders, who thinks they can take a leaf out of Rosa’s book.

14:27 – Peters attacks on Passo Lanciano

54km to go: The Frenchman – a stage winner in both the Giro and the Tour – attacks as soon as the road heads up at the start of the Cat.1 Passo Lanciano (10.3km at 7.6%). Sepulveda can’t respond but Tesfatsion – a double winner of the Tour of Rwanda – manages to claw his way back. And then, remarkably, so too does Sepulveda, who seemingly effortlessly passes Peters and comes to the front on the steepest 14% part of this climb.

Behind, James Knox has a mechanical and needs to stop on the side of the road to sort out an issue – a big blow, what with the peloton now within 2:30 of the front of the race and with Ineos Grenadiers setting a hefty tempo.

14:24 – Beef continues in the leading trio

55km to go: Nans Peters now finds himself outnumbered two-to-one in this trio after Sepulveda – who looked done and dusted a few minutes ago – joins his teammate Tesfatsion. But still the Drone Hopper duo refused to pull! Still, the Peters-powered trio are now 40 seconds clear as they negotiate the short descent ahead of the official start of the climb. Caicedo and Dombrowski were leading the chase behind but it seems like they’ve decided to sit up.

14:19 – Peters getting frustrated

58km to go: It’s Nans Peters who is doing all the pulling on the front and on numerous occasions he urges Tesfatsion to come through but the Eritrean stonewall ignores him – probably because he had a teammate behind. But then so does Peters, who gesticulates wildly in frustration. They have 25 seconds on the chasers where Sepulveda has just attacked in a bid to rejoin his teammate up the road.

It’s crazy tactics from the Drone Hopper duo with Tesfatsion now the one gesticulating as he looks behind and sees that it’s Sepulveda who is closing the gap on him, and not the others…

14:14 – Peters and Tesfatsion go clear

60km to go: No sooner had Tesfatsion rejoined the leaders than Peters put in a big attack and it’s the Eritrean who follows. The duo quickly open up a gap of 20 seconds before Diego Rosa cajoles the chasers into action. Sepulveda is back on so we have seven in pursuit. They’re not yet onto the categorised part of the Passo Lanciano but a little uphill amuse-bouche.

14:10 – Drone Hopper duo distanced

62km to go: We’re not even on the Passo Lanciano proper but Tesfatsion and Sepulveda have already gone into the red after Nans Peters puts in a big effort on the front of the break. Six of the break bridge over but the Drone Hopper-Androni Giacattoli pair can’t initially follow. The Eritrean soons return to the fold but it looks like curtains for the Argentine after his earlier effort in the intermediate sprint.

14:00 – Ineos Grenadiers primed

68km to go: The gap has dropped to 2:45 for the nine leaders after both Jonathan Castroviejo and Ben Swift come to the front to tap out tempo with the remainder of their train tucked in just a little behind. It’s clear that they intend to put down a marker today – and so they might: Ineos have won three of the previous four Giri, and the one they didn’t win was won by a rider who is now there’s in Carapaz.

13:48 – The first attacks start in the break

76km to go: Natnael Tesfatsion has just stretched his legs a little ahead of this next climb and his acceleration sees him gain a few bike lengths. He’s pegged back by two riders before the other six managed to bridge over. A sign of things to come. It will be interesting to see how Drone Hopper and Ag2R-Citroen use their numerical advantage today – particularly in the light of the last two days when Jumbo-Visma and Lotto Soudal benefited from having two or three men in the break.

13:40 – Porte: Carapaz is motivated for today

80km to go: We spoke to veteran Australian Riche Porte this morning ahead of the stage and he talked us though Ineos Grenadier’s options for today, bigging up his leader’s chances.

“I’m pretty motivated. Obviously, we have Richard Carapaz here who’s very motivated for today’s stage. I think it’s going to be the first real GC battle up the Blockhaus. We’re going to assess the situation once we’re there but in Richard we have a guy that we’re all in for. He can perhaps do something today – and when you have such morale in the team, when the foot’s on the throat, then you go for it.

“It’s obviously his [Carapaz’s] big target for the year. He’s great to be around. He’s a good leader – he comes on the bus, pats us on the back, he’s a great guy to be around. Look, we’re never going to throw it away but today, I know my job. If I have to sacrifice myself, I’m willing to do that. I’m 37, I’m not really here to take any more stress than I need to. I love the race but we’re going to take every day as it comes.”

13:34 – Sepulveda wins intermediate sprint

87km to go: The Argentine climber kicks clear on the ramp in Filetto to secure the cash prize and 12 ciclamino points (not that he’s after the sprinters’ jersey) in the intermediate sprint. No one really contested that and Eduardo Sepulveda was able to take that unopposed with Felix Gall leading the others over behind. The gap for these nine riders is down to 3:45 which probably won’t be enough for them to contest the stage win once the GC battle kicks off behind.

13:23 – Castroviejo comes to the front

95km to go: Ineos Grenadiers have sent Spain’s Jonathan Castroviejo to the front of the peloton which is interesting – it’s the first time the British team have shown their hand today. The Spaniard is covered in bandages after his big fall a couple day ago.

13:15 – Cataldo and Ciccone the local riders

98km to go: Trek-Segafredo duo Dario Cataldo and Giulio Ciccone hail from Lanciano and Chieti respectively – both a 40km ride from today’s final climb at Blockhaus, which they will know well from there training. Bodes well for the team of the current maglia rosa.

13:08 – Carapaz making his way back

102km to go: Richard Carapaz, who won the 2019 Giro for Movistar before joining Ineos Grenadiers, is riding back through the peloton after apparently dropping back to speak to his DS or answer a call of nature or pick up a bottle. The possibilities are endless – you choose. The Ecuadorian looks fine so there’s no concern there. He’ll be one of the big favourites today for the win at Blockhaus. To move in to pink, though, he’ll have to take two minutes from Juanpe Lopez and also drop Simon Yates, whom he trails by 24 seconds currently.

12:58 – One debutant; two riders with zero pro wins

108km to go: Felix Gall is the only rider in this breakaway who is tasting the Giro for the first time this year. The Austrian is also one of two of the nine leaders who has never picked up a pro win in his career, the other being Britain’s James Knox. May that change today? Knox is certainly one of the strongest climbers in this move…

12:53 – Today’s earlier flashpoint: Bilbao’s crash

112km to go: While the day’s break was forming, an incident in the main pack saw a handful of riders hit the deck going over a small brow halfway up the second climb today. The most high-profile rider to go down was Spain’s Pello Bilbao, who bashed his hip, cut his elbow and ripped the back of his jersey to shreds. Here’s what happened…

‘Big crash!’ – Handful of riders wiped out on Stage 9 at Giro d’Italia

12:45 – Three previous Giro stage winners in the move

118km to go: Of the nine escapees Nans Peters, Joe Dombrowski and Jonathan Caicedo have all won stages at the Giro before. Frenchman Peters soloed to victory in Anterselva in Stage 17 of the 2019 race; Ecuador’s Caicedo won atop Mount Etna in Stage 3 in 2020; the American Dombrowski won Stage 4 at Sestola last year, one day before he crashed out of the race in the high-speed spill that also ended Mikel Landa’s race. Here’s the highlights from that day last year…

Highlights: Landa crashes out as Ewan wins Stage 5

12:35 – The calm before the storm

122km to go: The gap is down to 4:42 for the nine leaders as they continue this long slog towards the intermediate sprint. They’re onto a slight uphill rise that punctuates the gradual descent to the foot of the uncategorised climb which spirits them up to that sprint.

12:15 – Trek and Team DSM control the pack

141km to go: There’s a slight lull in proceedings as the riders negotiate a 15km plateau following the last climb. It’s followed by a long descent and then an uncategorised climb towards the intermediate sprint at Filetto, which comes with around 87km to go. After some rolling roads it’s then the Passo Lanciano ahead of the final ascent to Blockhaus. The gap for the nine leaders is 5:15 as they start that long descent…

The Trek-Segafredo teammates of pink jersey Juanpe Lopez are on the front of the pack with the DSM train of Romain Bardet tucked in behind. Frenchman Bardet is in good form having won the Tour of the Alps and he’s currently 11th on GC at 2:06. All of the sprinters are back in the peloton which is very good news for those fearing the time limit today.

12:02 – Mechanical for Buchmann

150km to go: The peloton crests the summit at Roccarosa five minutes behind the nine leaders. Germay’s Emanuel Buchmann needs to stop to sort out an issue with his bike and he gets a little help from his Bora-Hansgrohe mechanic. Buchmann is one of Bora’s four GC men who, so far, are all within striking distance of the race lead. They are: Lennard Kamna (2nd at +0:38, Wilco Kelderman (7th at +1:55), Jai Hindley (15th at +2:16) and Buchmann (23rd at +2:23). A really strong showing for the German team.

11:58 – Rosa zips clear to secure KOM points

153km to go: It’s clear what Diego Rosa is after today – a slightly darker blue jersey than the Eolo-Kometa one he already has on his back. The Italian is taking no chances as he strikes out from distance to add another 18pts. So that takes his haul for the day to 40pts on top of the 3pts he already had in the KOM standings. So Rosa is now level with Lennard Kamna on 43pts so he just has Koen Bouwman ahead on 68pts.

11:40 – Leaders onto the third climb

160km to go: The Cat.2 climb of Roccaraso is 7.3km long at an average gradient of 6.1%. The best placed rider in the general classification from the leaders is the Austrian Gall, who is 6:48 down on pink jersey Juanpe Lopez in the standings. No threat for now, which is why Trek-Segafredo don’t seem overly concerned.

11:37 – Nine riders on the front of the race

162km to go: The two groups have come together so we now have nine ahead of the peloton with a gap of 4:30 as they approach the third climb of the day. Things have settled – and eased – enough to allow Caleb Ewan to rejoin the peloton, so the pace can’t be too zippy.

The nine leaders are: Felix Gall and Nans Peters (Ag2R-Citroen), Joe Dombrowski (Astana-Qazaqstan), Filippo Zana (Bardiani-CSF), Natnael Tesfatsion and Eduardo Sepulveda (Drone Hopper-Androni Giacattoli), Jonathan Caicedo (EF Education-EasyPost), Diego Rosa (Eolo-Kometa) and James Knox (Quick-Step Alpha Vinyl). Nine riders from eight different countries – it’s a veritably cosmopolitan move.

11:26 – Trio ahead after Rosa bags KOM points

171km to go: Diego Rosa went over the top of the second climb to pocket the maximum 18pts. That puts him up to fifth place in the KOM standings with a total of 25 points, 22 of which he has picked up on today’s two climbs. Dutchman Koen Bouwman still leads the climbers’ classification with 68pts.

Tesfatsion and Dombrowski have caught Rosa on the descent and it will only be a matter of time before the six chasers – Gall, Peters, Zana, Sepulveda, Caicedo and Knox – catch them. The peloton is 3:10 in arrears.

11:20 – Knox joins chasers; Bilbao receives treatment

174km to go: James Knox kicks clear of the pack and joins the Caicedo chase group, which is 1:05 down on Rosa, who has 25 seconds over Dombrowski and Tesfatsion. The peloton has really knocked it off – perhaps as a result of that crash earlier. Bilbao receives some treatment from the doctor off the back – his got a gash to his left hip, a cut to his elbow and his jersey is fairly torn up. The pack is 2:45 down and so they have let these moves go for now.

11:12 – Crash in the pack; Bilbao down

177km to go: There’s an incident in the peloton as the speed goes up on a flattish section that punctuates this second climb. Pello Bilbao is the biggest name who goes down in a heap, just after a brow following a corner. Around six or seven riders hit the deck there, with Jorge Arcas also down – the Spaniard who contested the four-way sprint at yesterday’s finish. Nothing serious but hardly ideal for those involved.

Meanwhile, Jonathan Caicedo (EF Education-EastPost) is trying to bridge over to Dombrowski and Tesfatsion, who have dropped Gall. They trail lone leader Rosa by 25 seconds with the main field a further minute in arrears. Caicedo is actually now in a chasing quintet alongside Gall, Filippo Zana (Bardiani-CSF), Nans Peters (Ag2R-Citroen) and Eduardo Sepulveda (Drone Hopper). Things are far from settled.

11:05 – Rosa clearly likes solo breaks

180km to go: The terrain today is admittedly better suited to the 31-year-old’s strengths than that long, flat coastal schlep the other day. The Italian has 10 seconds on a chasing trio of Felix Gall (Ag2R-Citroen), Joe Dombrowski (Astana) and Natnael Tesfatsion (Drone Hopper). The main pack is at 30 seconds but loads of riders have gone out the back, including Biniam Girmay and Wout Poels, both of whom involved in yesterday’s break in Naples.

10:58 – Already onto the second climb

182km to go: The three leaders are onto the Cat.2 Rionero Sannitico but their gap is only 20 seconds on the Bouwman-Kudus-Van der Poel chase group, which includes around 15 riders, but which has almost been tagged back by the pack. Perhaps aware of this situation behind, Diego Rosa strikes out solo and rides clear of Holmes and Tasfatsion. The Italian was in that long break on Thursday’s stage to Scalea where he never stood a chance of denying the sprinters a bunch finish.

Talking of which, the man who won that day, Arnaud Demare, the ciclamino jersey, has already been shelled out the back. It’s going to be a long day for the Frenchman and the other riders in the gruppetto…

10:54 – Holmes pockets KOM points

186km to go: It’s a trio out ahead now with Matthew Holmes (Lotto Soudal) taking the 9pts over the summit of the climb ahead of Diego Rosa (Eolo-Kometa) who takes 4pts and Natnael Tesfatsion (Drone Hopper-Androni Giacattoli) who settles for 2pts. There’s a total of 125pts in the maglia azzurra competition up for grabs today.

10:51 – Blue jersey Bouwman on the move

188km to go: We’re straight onto the Cat.3 Valico del Macerone climb (3.1km at 5.8%) and we have five clear: Jaakko Hanninen, Luca Covili, Natnael Tesfatsion, Diego Rosa and Matt Holmes. Friday’s winner Koen Bouwman, the blue jersey, has bridged over to a chase group that includes – wait for it – Mathieu van der Poel, Davide Villela and Merhawi Kudus. Behind, Ben Swift has got himself into another group riding ahead of the peloton, which is all strung out. A very active start.

10:45 – Stage 9 under way

191km to go: With the peloton passing under the entry sign into the town of Isernia, the flag drops and this tough ninth stage gets going. Five riders ping off the front from the outset with a host of others trying to bridge over on this very short flat section before the first climb.

Last day in pink for Lopez?

The Spaniard is 38 seconds clear of Lennard Kamna on GC with Estonia’s Rein Taaramae lurking in third and Guillaume Martin, after yesterday’s exploits, up to fourth at 1:06 and ahead of Simon Yates, who is the best placed of the GC favourites at 1:42. It’s going to be tough for Juanpe Lopez to retain his lead today. He could be waving goodbye to the pink jersey today…

Lotto Soudal mirror Jumbo-Visma to bounce back

Never mind it being a decade since Thomas De Gendt’s first Grand Tour stage win, it was just one day since we saw a rider celebrate fourth place with as much gusto as Harm Vanhoucke. Belgian veteran De Gendt’s victory from a four-man move in Naples – mirroring Jumbo-Visma’s coup a day earlier – saw Lotto Soudal get the stage win that has eluded them so far through sprinter Caleb Ewan.

It was a case of very recent history repeating itself on the sunny Campania coast yesterday with Lotto Soudal pulling off a near identical coup as Jumbo-Visma just 24 hours earlier. Seldom do you see riders finishing fourth from a four-man move cross the line with such beaming smiles on their faces – but this has now happened twice on successive days on the Giro.

Just as , Harm Vanhoucke did the honours for Thomas De Gendt in Naples – even if the latter had initially been working for the former in a thrilling game of cat and mouse in the streets of the pizza capital of Italy.

Lotto Soudal and Jumbo-Visma celebrate

Image credit: Getty Images

Riders ready for hardest day so far in Abruzzo

Well, it’s certainly the hardest start to a Grand Tour stage we have seen in quite some time, with the road ramping up from the outset with a short Cat.3 climb followed by back-to-back Cat.2 ascents and separated with only very short descents. Those climbs all hit double digit gradients and they precede a long descent and some lumps and bumps ahead of the main course of the Passo Lanciano (10.3km at 7.6%) and the summit showdown on Blockhaus (13.6km at 8.4%).

GCN anchor Dan Lloyd – who hated these kinds of days during his time as a pro – tweeted this last night about what’s in store for the first hour or so today, citing the opinion of BikeExchange-Jayco DS Matt White:

It makes last week’s first summit finish on Mount Etna look like a walk in the park in comparison – and although there’s not as much total climbing as there was in that pulsating seventh stage on Friday, the climbs are far tougher and the gaps between the GC favourites will be much larger. No disrespect to Juanpe Lopez but it would be a miracle if the Spaniard is still in pink for tomorrow’s rest day…

Here’s the profile in full, described just now by Sean Kelly as “savage”:

https://i.eurosport.com/2022/05/15/3372950.jpg

What happened yesterday?

Ten years after his historic win on the Stelvio, Thomas De Gendt soared to a second Giro d’Italia stage win with an emphatic victory on the streets of Naples thanks to a little help from his Belgian compatriot and teammate Harm Vanhoucke.

The Lotto Soudal duo were part of a four-man move that extricated itself from a stellar breakaway that featured a third Lotto Soudal rider in Sylvain Moniquet as well as the likes of Mathieu van der Poel (Alpecin-Fenix), Biniam Girmay (Intermarche-Wanty-Gobert) and Diego Ulissi (UAE Team Emirates).

On an absorbing 153km circuit race that had the feel of a mini world championships, the day’s breakaway built up a maximum lead of over four minutes during four lumpy loops around Bacoli, the picturesque peninsula to the west of Naples.

Read the full report here

How can I watch?

Each and every stage will be broadcast in its entirety on Eurosport, and GCN+, bookended by The Breakaway, presented by Orla Chennaoui and Dan Lloyd. Rob Hatch and Hannah Walker will be in the commentary box with regular contributions from pundits Robbie McEwen, Sean Kelly and Adam Blythe, with Bradley Wiggins doing his thing on the back of a motorbike.

Stage 9 profile and route map

https://i.eurosport.com/2021/11/11/3252470.jpg

– – –

Stream the Giro d’Italia live and on-demand on discovery+. You can also watch all the action live on eurosport.co.uk.

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Cycling

Giro d’Italia | Stage 9

11:15-18:00

12:02 – Mechanical for Buchmann

150km to go: The peloton crests the summit at Roccarosa five minutes behind the nine leaders. Germay’s Emanuel Buchmann needs to stop to sort out an issue with his bike and he gets a little help from his Bora-Hansgrohe mechanic. Buchmann is one of Bora’s four GC men who, so far, are all within striking distance of the race lead. They are: Lennard Kamna (2nd at +0:38, Wilco Kelderman (7th at +1:55), Jai Hindley (15th at +2:16) and Buchmann (23rd at +2:23). A really strong showing for the German team.

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Giro d’Italia 2022 Stage 9 – Route map, how to watch ‘stuff nightmares are made of’

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11:58 – Rosa zips clear to secure KOM points

153km to go: It’s clear what Diego Rosa is after today – a slightly darker blue jersey than the Eolo-Kometa one he already has on his back. The Italian is taking no chances as he strikes out from distance to add another 18pts. So that takes his haul for the day to 40pts on top of the 3pts he already had in the KOM standings. So Rosa is now level with Lennard Kamna on 43pts so he just has Koen Bouwman ahead on 68pts.

11:40 – Leaders onto the third climb

160km to go: The Cat.2 climb of Roccaraso is 7.3km long at an average gradient of 6.1%. The best placed rider in the general classification from the leaders is the Austrian Gall, who is 6:48 down on pink jersey Juanpe Lopez in the standings. No threat for now, which is why Trek-Segafredo don’t seem overly concerned.

11:37 – Nine riders on the front of the race

162km to go: The two groups have come together so we now have nine ahead of the peloton with a gap of 4:30 as they approach the third climb of the day. Things have settled – and eased – enough to allow Caleb Ewan to rejoin the peloton, so the pace can’t be too zippy.

The nine leaders are: Felix Gall and Nans Peters (Ag2R-Citroen), Joe Dombrowski (Astana-Qazaqstan), Filippo Zana (Bardiani-CSF), Natnael Tesfatsion and Eduardo Sepulveda (Drone Hopper-Androni Giacattoli), Jonathan Caicedo (EF Education-EasyPost), Diego Rosa (Eolo-Kometa) and James Knox (Quick-Step Alpha Vinyl). Nine riders from eight different countries – it’s a veritably cosmopolitan move.

11:26 – Trio ahead after Rosa bags KOM points

171km to go: Diego Rosa went over the top of the second climb to pocket the maximum 18pts. That puts him up to fifth place in the KOM standings with a total of 25 points, 22 of which he has picked up on today’s two climbs. Dutchman Koen Bouwman still leads the climbers’ classification with 68pts.

Tesfatsion and Dombrowski have caught Rosa on the descent and it will only be a matter of time before the six chasers – Gall, Peters, Zana, Sepulveda, Caicedo and Knox – catch them. The peloton is 3:10 in arrears.

11:20 – Knox joins chasers; Bilbao receives treatment

174km to go: James Knox kicks clear of the pack and joins the Caicedo chase group, which is 1:05 down on Rosa, who has 25 seconds over Dombrowski and Tesfatsion. The peloton has really knocked it off – perhaps as a result of that crash earlier. Bilbao receives some treatment from the doctor off the back – his got a gash to his left hip, a cut to his elbow and his jersey is fairly torn up. The pack is 2:45 down and so they have let these moves go for now.

11:12 – Crash in the pack; Bilbao down

177km to go: There’s an incident in the peloton as the speed goes up on a flattish section that punctuates this second climb. Pello Bilbao is the biggest name who goes down in a heap, just after a brow following a corner. Around six or seven riders hit the deck there, with Jorge Arcas also down – the Spaniard who contested the four-way sprint at yesterday’s finish. Nothing serious but hardly ideal for those involved.

Meanwhile, Jonathan Caicedo (EF Education-EastPost) is trying to bridge over to Dombrowski and Tesfatsion, who have dropped Gall. They trail lone leader Rosa by 25 seconds with the main field a further minute in arrears. Caicedo is actually now in a chasing quintet alongside Gall, Filippo Zana (Bardiani-CSF), Nans Peters (Ag2R-Citroen) and Eduardo Sepulveda (Drone Hopper). Things are far from settled.

11:05 – Rosa clearly likes solo breaks

180km to go: The terrain today is admittedly better suited to the 31-year-old’s strengths than that long, flat coastal schlep the other day. The Italian has 10 seconds on a chasing trio of Felix Gall (Ag2R-Citroen), Joe Dombrowski (Astana) and Natnael Tesfatsion (Drone Hopper). The main pack is at 30 seconds but loads of riders have gone out the back, including Biniam Girmay and Wout Poels, both of whom involved in yesterday’s break in Naples.

10:58 – Already onto the second climb

182km to go: The three leaders are onto the Cat.2 Rionero Sannitico but their gap is only 20 seconds on the Bouwman-Kudus-Van der Poel chase group, which includes around 15 riders, but which has almost been tagged back by the pack. Perhaps aware of this situation behind, Diego Rosa strikes out solo and rides clear of Holmes and Tasfatsion. The Italian was in that long break on Thursday’s stage to Scalea where he never stood a chance of denying the sprinters a bunch finish.

Talking of which, the man who won that day, Arnaud Demare, the ciclamino jersey, has already been shelled out the back. It’s going to be a long day for the Frenchman and the other riders in the gruppetto…

10:54 – Holmes pockets KOM points

186km to go: It’s a trio out ahead now with Matthew Holmes (Lotto Soudal) taking the 9pts over the summit of the climb ahead of Diego Rosa (Eolo-Kometa) who takes 4pts and Natnael Tesfatsion (Drone Hopper-Androni Giacattoli) who settles for 2pts. There’s a total of 125pts in the maglia azzurra competition up for grabs today.

10:51 – Blue jersey Bouwman on the move

188km to go: We’re straight onto the Cat.3 Valico del Macerone climb (3.1km at 5.8%) and we have five clear: Jaakko Hanninen, Luca Covili, Natnael Tesfatsion, Diego Rosa and Matt Holmes. Friday’s winner Koen Bouwman, the blue jersey, has bridged over to a chase group that includes – wait for it – Mathieu van der Poel, Davide Villela and Merhawi Kudus. Behind, Ben Swift has got himself into another group riding ahead of the peloton, which is all strung out. A very active start.

10:45 – Stage 9 under way

191km to go: With the peloton passing under the entry sign into the town of Isernia, the flag drops and this tough ninth stage gets going. Five riders ping off the front from the outset with a host of others trying to bridge over on this very short flat section before the first climb.

Last day in pink for Lopez?

The Spaniard is 38 seconds clear of Lennard Kamna on GC with Estonia’s Rein Taaramae lurking in third and Guillaume Martin, after yesterday’s exploits, up to fourth at 1:06 and ahead of Simon Yates, who is the best placed of the GC favourites at 1:42. It’s going to be tough for Juanpe Lopez to retain his lead today. He could be waving goodbye to the pink jersey today…

Lotto Soudal mirror Jumbo-Visma to bounce back

Never mind it being a decade since Thomas De Gendt’s first Grand Tour stage win, it was just one day since we saw a rider celebrate fourth place with as much gusto as Harm Vanhoucke. Belgian veteran De Gendt’s victory from a four-man move in Naples – mirroring Jumbo-Visma’s coup a day earlier – saw Lotto Soudal get the stage win that has eluded them so far through sprinter Caleb Ewan.

It was a case of very recent history repeating itself on the sunny Campania coast yesterday with Lotto Soudal pulling off a near identical coup as Jumbo-Visma just 24 hours earlier. Seldom do you see riders finishing fourth from a four-man move cross the line with such beaming smiles on their faces – but this has now happened twice on successive days on the Giro.

Just as , Harm Vanhoucke did the honours for Thomas De Gendt in Naples – even if the latter had initially been working for the former in a thrilling game of cat and mouse in the streets of the pizza capital of Italy.

Lotto Soudal and Jumbo-Visma celebrate

Image credit: Getty Images

Riders ready for hardest day so far in Abruzzo

Well, it’s certainly the hardest start to a Grand Tour stage we have seen in quite some time, with the road ramping up from the outset with a short Cat.3 climb followed by back-to-back Cat.2 ascents and separated with only very short descents. Those climbs all hit double digit gradients and they precede a long descent and some lumps and bumps ahead of the main course of the Passo Lanciano (10.3km at 7.6%) and the summit showdown on Blockhaus (13.6km at 8.4%).

GCN anchor Dan Lloyd – who hated these kinds of days during his time as a pro – tweeted this last night about what’s in store for the first hour or so today, citing the opinion of BikeExchange-Jayco DS Matt White:

It makes last week’s first summit finish on Mount Etna look like a walk in the park in comparison – and although there’s not as much total climbing as there was in that pulsating seventh stage on Friday, the climbs are far tougher and the gaps between the GC favourites will be much larger. No disrespect to Juanpe Lopez but it would be a miracle if the Spaniard is still in pink for tomorrow’s rest day…

Here’s the profile in full, described just now by Sean Kelly as “savage”:

https://i.eurosport.com/2022/05/15/3372950.jpg

What happened yesterday?

Ten years after his historic win on the Stelvio, Thomas De Gendt soared to a second Giro d’Italia stage win with an emphatic victory on the streets of Naples thanks to a little help from his Belgian compatriot and teammate Harm Vanhoucke.

The Lotto Soudal duo were part of a four-man move that extricated itself from a stellar breakaway that featured a third Lotto Soudal rider in Sylvain Moniquet as well as the likes of Mathieu van der Poel (Alpecin-Fenix), Biniam Girmay (Intermarche-Wanty-Gobert) and Diego Ulissi (UAE Team Emirates).

On an absorbing 153km circuit race that had the feel of a mini world championships, the day’s breakaway built up a maximum lead of over four minutes during four lumpy loops around Bacoli, the picturesque peninsula to the west of Naples.

Read the full report here

How can I watch?

Each and every stage will be broadcast in its entirety on Eurosport, and GCN+, bookended by The Breakaway, presented by Orla Chennaoui and Dan Lloyd. Rob Hatch and Hannah Walker will be in the commentary box with regular contributions from pundits Robbie McEwen, Sean Kelly and Adam Blythe, with Bradley Wiggins doing his thing on the back of a motorbike.

Stage 9 profile and route map

https://i.eurosport.com/2021/11/11/3252470.jpg

– – –

Stream the Giro d’Italia live and on-demand on discovery+. You can also watch all the action live on eurosport.co.uk.

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Cycling

Giro d’Italia | Stage 9

11:15-18:00

12:53 – Today’s earlier flashpoint: Bilbao’s crash

112km to go: While the day’s break was forming, an incident in the main pack saw a handful of riders hit the deck going over a small brow halfway up the second climb today. The most high-profile rider to go down was Spain’s Pello Bilbao, who bashed his hip, cut his elbow and ripped the back of his jersey to shreds. Here’s what happened…

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Giro d’Italia 2022 Stage 9 – Route map, how to watch ‘stuff nightmares are made of’

5 HOURS AGO

‘Big crash!’ – Handful of riders wiped out on Stage 9 at Giro d’Italia

12:45 – Three previous Giro stage winners in the move

118km to go: Of the nine escapees Nans Peters, Joe Dombrowski and Jonathan Caicedo have all won stages at the Giro before. Frenchman Peters soloed to victory in Anterselva in Stage 17 of the 2019 race; Ecuador’s Caicedo won atop Mount Etna in Stage 3 in 2020; the American Dombrowski won Stage 4 at Sestola last year, one day before he crashed out of the race in the high-speed spill that also ended Mikel Landa’s race. Here’s the highlights from that day last year…

Highlights: Landa crashes out as Ewan wins Stage 5

12:35 – The calm before the storm

122km to go: The gap is down to 4:42 for the nine leaders as they continue this long slog towards the intermediate sprint. They’re onto a slight uphill rise that punctuates the gradual descent to the foot of the uncategorised climb which spirits them up to that sprint.

12:15 – Trek and Team DSM control the pack

141km to go: There’s a slight lull in proceedings as the riders negotiate a 15km plateau following the last climb. It’s followed by a long descent and then an uncategorised climb towards the intermediate sprint at Filetto, which comes with around 87km to go. After some rolling roads it’s then the Passo Lanciano ahead of the final ascent to Blockhaus. The gap for the nine leaders is 5:15 as they start that long descent…

The Trek-Segafredo teammates of pink jersey Juanpe Lopez are on the front of the pack with the DSM train of Romain Bardet tucked in behind. Frenchman Bardet is in good form having won the Tour of the Alps and he’s currently 11th on GC at 2:06. All of the sprinters are back in the peloton which is very good news for those fearing the time limit today.

12:02 – Mechanical for Buchmann

150km to go: The peloton crests the summit at Roccarosa five minutes behind the nine leaders. Germay’s Emanuel Buchmann needs to stop to sort out an issue with his bike and he gets a little help from his Bora-Hansgrohe mechanic. Buchmann is one of Bora’s four GC men who, so far, are all within striking distance of the race lead. They are: Lennard Kamna (2nd at +0:38, Wilco Kelderman (7th at +1:55), Jai Hindley (15th at +2:16) and Buchmann (23rd at +2:23). A really strong showing for the German team.

11:58 – Rosa zips clear to secure KOM points

153km to go: It’s clear what Diego Rosa is after today – a slightly darker blue jersey than the Eolo-Kometa one he already has on his back. The Italian is taking no chances as he strikes out from distance to add another 18pts. So that takes his haul for the day to 40pts on top of the 3pts he already had in the KOM standings. So Rosa is now level with Lennard Kamna on 43pts so he just has Koen Bouwman ahead on 68pts.

11:40 – Leaders onto the third climb

160km to go: The Cat.2 climb of Roccaraso is 7.3km long at an average gradient of 6.1%. The best placed rider in the general classification from the leaders is the Austrian Gall, who is 6:48 down on pink jersey Juanpe Lopez in the standings. No threat for now, which is why Trek-Segafredo don’t seem overly concerned.

11:37 – Nine riders on the front of the race

162km to go: The two groups have come together so we now have nine ahead of the peloton with a gap of 4:30 as they approach the third climb of the day. Things have settled – and eased – enough to allow Caleb Ewan to rejoin the peloton, so the pace can’t be too zippy.

The nine leaders are: Felix Gall and Nans Peters (Ag2R-Citroen), Joe Dombrowski (Astana-Qazaqstan), Filippo Zana (Bardiani-CSF), Natnael Tesfatsion and Eduardo Sepulveda (Drone Hopper-Androni Giacattoli), Jonathan Caicedo (EF Education-EasyPost), Diego Rosa (Eolo-Kometa) and James Knox (Quick-Step Alpha Vinyl). Nine riders from eight different countries – it’s a veritably cosmopolitan move.

11:26 – Trio ahead after Rosa bags KOM points

171km to go: Diego Rosa went over the top of the second climb to pocket the maximum 18pts. That puts him up to fifth place in the KOM standings with a total of 25 points, 22 of which he has picked up on today’s two climbs. Dutchman Koen Bouwman still leads the climbers’ classification with 68pts.

Tesfatsion and Dombrowski have caught Rosa on the descent and it will only be a matter of time before the six chasers – Gall, Peters, Zana, Sepulveda, Caicedo and Knox – catch them. The peloton is 3:10 in arrears.

11:20 – Knox joins chasers; Bilbao receives treatment

174km to go: James Knox kicks clear of the pack and joins the Caicedo chase group, which is 1:05 down on Rosa, who has 25 seconds over Dombrowski and Tesfatsion. The peloton has really knocked it off – perhaps as a result of that crash earlier. Bilbao receives some treatment from the doctor off the back – his got a gash to his left hip, a cut to his elbow and his jersey is fairly torn up. The pack is 2:45 down and so they have let these moves go for now.

11:12 – Crash in the pack; Bilbao down

177km to go: There’s an incident in the peloton as the speed goes up on a flattish section that punctuates this second climb. Pello Bilbao is the biggest name who goes down in a heap, just after a brow following a corner. Around six or seven riders hit the deck there, with Jorge Arcas also down – the Spaniard who contested the four-way sprint at yesterday’s finish. Nothing serious but hardly ideal for those involved.

Meanwhile, Jonathan Caicedo (EF Education-EastPost) is trying to bridge over to Dombrowski and Tesfatsion, who have dropped Gall. They trail lone leader Rosa by 25 seconds with the main field a further minute in arrears. Caicedo is actually now in a chasing quintet alongside Gall, Filippo Zana (Bardiani-CSF), Nans Peters (Ag2R-Citroen) and Eduardo Sepulveda (Drone Hopper). Things are far from settled.

11:05 – Rosa clearly likes solo breaks

180km to go: The terrain today is admittedly better suited to the 31-year-old’s strengths than that long, flat coastal schlep the other day. The Italian has 10 seconds on a chasing trio of Felix Gall (Ag2R-Citroen), Joe Dombrowski (Astana) and Natnael Tesfatsion (Drone Hopper). The main pack is at 30 seconds but loads of riders have gone out the back, including Biniam Girmay and Wout Poels, both of whom involved in yesterday’s break in Naples.

10:58 – Already onto the second climb

182km to go: The three leaders are onto the Cat.2 Rionero Sannitico but their gap is only 20 seconds on the Bouwman-Kudus-Van der Poel chase group, which includes around 15 riders, but which has almost been tagged back by the pack. Perhaps aware of this situation behind, Diego Rosa strikes out solo and rides clear of Holmes and Tasfatsion. The Italian was in that long break on Thursday’s stage to Scalea where he never stood a chance of denying the sprinters a bunch finish.

Talking of which, the man who won that day, Arnaud Demare, the ciclamino jersey, has already been shelled out the back. It’s going to be a long day for the Frenchman and the other riders in the gruppetto…

10:54 – Holmes pockets KOM points

186km to go: It’s a trio out ahead now with Matthew Holmes (Lotto Soudal) taking the 9pts over the summit of the climb ahead of Diego Rosa (Eolo-Kometa) who takes 4pts and Natnael Tesfatsion (Drone Hopper-Androni Giacattoli) who settles for 2pts. There’s a total of 125pts in the maglia azzurra competition up for grabs today.

10:51 – Blue jersey Bouwman on the move

188km to go: We’re straight onto the Cat.3 Valico del Macerone climb (3.1km at 5.8%) and we have five clear: Jaakko Hanninen, Luca Covili, Natnael Tesfatsion, Diego Rosa and Matt Holmes. Friday’s winner Koen Bouwman, the blue jersey, has bridged over to a chase group that includes – wait for it – Mathieu van der Poel, Davide Villela and Merhawi Kudus. Behind, Ben Swift has got himself into another group riding ahead of the peloton, which is all strung out. A very active start.

10:45 – Stage 9 under way

191km to go: With the peloton passing under the entry sign into the town of Isernia, the flag drops and this tough ninth stage gets going. Five riders ping off the front from the outset with a host of others trying to bridge over on this very short flat section before the first climb.

Last day in pink for Lopez?

The Spaniard is 38 seconds clear of Lennard Kamna on GC with Estonia’s Rein Taaramae lurking in third and Guillaume Martin, after yesterday’s exploits, up to fourth at 1:06 and ahead of Simon Yates, who is the best placed of the GC favourites at 1:42. It’s going to be tough for Juanpe Lopez to retain his lead today. He could be waving goodbye to the pink jersey today…

Lotto Soudal mirror Jumbo-Visma to bounce back

Never mind it being a decade since Thomas De Gendt’s first Grand Tour stage win, it was just one day since we saw a rider celebrate fourth place with as much gusto as Harm Vanhoucke. Belgian veteran De Gendt’s victory from a four-man move in Naples – mirroring Jumbo-Visma’s coup a day earlier – saw Lotto Soudal get the stage win that has eluded them so far through sprinter Caleb Ewan.

It was a case of very recent history repeating itself on the sunny Campania coast yesterday with Lotto Soudal pulling off a near identical coup as Jumbo-Visma just 24 hours earlier. Seldom do you see riders finishing fourth from a four-man move cross the line with such beaming smiles on their faces – but this has now happened twice on successive days on the Giro.

Just as , Harm Vanhoucke did the honours for Thomas De Gendt in Naples – even if the latter had initially been working for the former in a thrilling game of cat and mouse in the streets of the pizza capital of Italy.

Lotto Soudal and Jumbo-Visma celebrate

Image credit: Getty Images

Riders ready for hardest day so far in Abruzzo

Well, it’s certainly the hardest start to a Grand Tour stage we have seen in quite some time, with the road ramping up from the outset with a short Cat.3 climb followed by back-to-back Cat.2 ascents and separated with only very short descents. Those climbs all hit double digit gradients and they precede a long descent and some lumps and bumps ahead of the main course of the Passo Lanciano (10.3km at 7.6%) and the summit showdown on Blockhaus (13.6km at 8.4%).

GCN anchor Dan Lloyd – who hated these kinds of days during his time as a pro – tweeted this last night about what’s in store for the first hour or so today, citing the opinion of BikeExchange-Jayco DS Matt White:

It makes last week’s first summit finish on Mount Etna look like a walk in the park in comparison – and although there’s not as much total climbing as there was in that pulsating seventh stage on Friday, the climbs are far tougher and the gaps between the GC favourites will be much larger. No disrespect to Juanpe Lopez but it would be a miracle if the Spaniard is still in pink for tomorrow’s rest day…

Here’s the profile in full, described just now by Sean Kelly as “savage”:

https://i.eurosport.com/2022/05/15/3372950.jpg

What happened yesterday?

Ten years after his historic win on the Stelvio, Thomas De Gendt soared to a second Giro d’Italia stage win with an emphatic victory on the streets of Naples thanks to a little help from his Belgian compatriot and teammate Harm Vanhoucke.

The Lotto Soudal duo were part of a four-man move that extricated itself from a stellar breakaway that featured a third Lotto Soudal rider in Sylvain Moniquet as well as the likes of Mathieu van der Poel (Alpecin-Fenix), Biniam Girmay (Intermarche-Wanty-Gobert) and Diego Ulissi (UAE Team Emirates).

On an absorbing 153km circuit race that had the feel of a mini world championships, the day’s breakaway built up a maximum lead of over four minutes during four lumpy loops around Bacoli, the picturesque peninsula to the west of Naples.

Read the full report here

How can I watch?

Each and every stage will be broadcast in its entirety on Eurosport, and GCN+, bookended by The Breakaway, presented by Orla Chennaoui and Dan Lloyd. Rob Hatch and Hannah Walker will be in the commentary box with regular contributions from pundits Robbie McEwen, Sean Kelly and Adam Blythe, with Bradley Wiggins doing his thing on the back of a motorbike.

Stage 9 profile and route map

https://i.eurosport.com/2021/11/11/3252470.jpg

– – –

Stream the Giro d’Italia live and on-demand on discovery+. You can also watch all the action live on eurosport.co.uk.

Giro d’Italia

‘Given up’ to ‘fastest here’ – The extraordinary return of ‘Thomas the Tank Engine’

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Stage 8 highlights: Van der Poel frustrated as De Gendt tees up his own win

18 HOURS AGO

Giro d'Italia 2022 Stage 9 – Route map, how to watch 'stuff nightmares are made of'

The GC favourites have been suspiciously quiet during the opening week of the Giro d’Italia. That changes today.

A double ascent of the fearsome Blockhaus, including the tougher side of the climb on the grind to the finish, will inject some much-needed spice into the battle for pink on the race’s first five-star stage. And with a rest day to follow on Monday, there is no reason for the race not to explode into life.

Maxing out at 14%, with an average gradient of over 8% from top to bottom, the Blockhaus will leave riders wanting to “to strap a rocket onto their bums”. According to Eurosport cycling expert Adam Blythe, anyway.

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Giro d’Italia 2022 Stage 8 – Route map, how to watch ‘absolutely bonkers’ stage

YESTERDAY AT 19:25

“That is the stuff nightmares are made of when you’re a non-climber,” continues Robbie McEwen, with no time for rest on Sunday as the race immediately goes uphill from the start in Isernia.

Blythe adds: “It’s one of the hardest climbs of the Giro and I expect that the general classification battle will finally begin!”

We can’t wait…

HOW CAN I WATCH THE GIRO ON TV AND LIVE STREAM?

Each and every stage will be broadcast in its entirety on Eurosport, discovery+ and GCN+, bookended by The Breakaway, presented by Orla Chennaoui and Dan Lloyd. Rob Hatch and Hannah Walker will be in the commentary box with regular contributions from pundits Robbie McEwen, Sean Kelly and Adam Blythe, with Bradley Wiggins doing his thing on the back of a motorbike.

WHEN IS STAGE 9?

It’s an earlier start! Tune in from 10:15-17:00 BST to watch Stage 9 of the Giro d’Italia. Watch the action on Eurosport 1, with uninterrupted coverage on discovery+

STAGE 9 PROFILE AND ROUTE MAP

https://sportblogg.net/wp-content/uploads/2022/04/3362505.jpg

– – –

Stream the Giro d’Italia live and on-demand on discovery+. You can also watch all the action live on eurosport.co.uk.

Giro d’Italia

Giro d’Italia Stage 8 as it happened – De Gendt defies the big names to take breakaway win

YESTERDAY AT 07:20

Giro d’Italia

Giro d’Italia 2022 Stage 7 – Route map, how to watch as GC battle looms

13/05/2022 AT 05:58

Giro d'Italia 2022 Stage 9 – Route map, how to watch 'stuff nightmares are made of'

The GC favourites have been suspiciously quiet during the opening week of the Giro d’Italia. That changes today.

A double ascent of the fearsome Blockhaus, including the tougher side of the climb on the grind to the finish, will inject some much-needed spice into the battle for pink on the race’s first five-star stage. And with a rest day to follow on Monday, there is no reason for the race not to explode into life.

Maxing out at 14%, with an average gradient of over 8% from top to bottom, the Blockhaus will leave riders wanting to “to strap a rocket onto their bums”. According to Eurosport cycling expert Adam Blythe, anyway.

Giro d’Italia

Giro d’Italia 2022 Stage 8 – Route map, how to watch ‘absolutely bonkers’ stage

YESTERDAY AT 19:25

“That is the stuff nightmares are made of when you’re a non-climber,” continues Robbie McEwen, with no time for rest on Sunday as the race immediately goes uphill from the start in Isernia.

Blythe adds: “It’s one of the hardest climbs of the Giro and I expect that the general classification battle will finally begin!”

We can’t wait…

HOW CAN I WATCH THE GIRO ON TV AND LIVE STREAM?

Each and every stage will be broadcast in its entirety on Eurosport, discovery+ and GCN+, bookended by The Breakaway, presented by Orla Chennaoui and Dan Lloyd. Rob Hatch and Hannah Walker will be in the commentary box with regular contributions from pundits Robbie McEwen, Sean Kelly and Adam Blythe, with Bradley Wiggins doing his thing on the back of a motorbike.

WHEN IS STAGE 9?

It’s an earlier start! Tune in from 10:15-17:00 BST to watch Stage 9 of the Giro d’Italia. Watch the action on Eurosport 1, with uninterrupted coverage on discovery+

STAGE 9 PROFILE AND ROUTE MAP

https://sportblogg.net/wp-content/uploads/2022/04/3362505.jpg

– – –

Stream the Giro d’Italia live and on-demand on discovery+. You can also watch all the action live on eurosport.co.uk.

Giro d’Italia

Giro d’Italia Stage 8 as it happened – De Gendt defies the big names to take breakaway win

YESTERDAY AT 07:20

Giro d’Italia

Giro d’Italia 2022 Stage 7 – Route map, how to watch as GC battle looms

13/05/2022 AT 05:58

Giro d'Italia 2022 Stage 9 – Route map, how to watch 'stuff nightmares are made of'

The GC favourites have been suspiciously quiet during the opening week of the Giro d’Italia. That changes today.

A double ascent of the fearsome Blockhaus, including the tougher side of the climb on the grind to the finish, will inject some much-needed spice into the battle for pink on the race’s first five-star stage. And with a rest day to follow on Monday, there is no reason for the race not to explode into life.

Maxing out at 14%, with an average gradient of over 8% from top to bottom, the Blockhaus will leave riders wanting to “to strap a rocket onto their bums”. According to Eurosport cycling expert Adam Blythe, anyway.

Giro d’Italia

Giro d’Italia 2022 Stage 8 – Route map, how to watch ‘absolutely bonkers’ stage

YESTERDAY AT 19:25

“That is the stuff nightmares are made of when you’re a non-climber,” continues Robbie McEwen, with no time for rest on Sunday as the race immediately goes uphill from the start in Isernia.

Blythe adds: “It’s one of the hardest climbs of the Giro and I expect that the general classification battle will finally begin!”

We can’t wait…

HOW CAN I WATCH THE GIRO ON TV AND LIVE STREAM?

Each and every stage will be broadcast in its entirety on Eurosport, discovery+ and GCN+, bookended by The Breakaway, presented by Orla Chennaoui and Dan Lloyd. Rob Hatch and Hannah Walker will be in the commentary box with regular contributions from pundits Robbie McEwen, Sean Kelly and Adam Blythe, with Bradley Wiggins doing his thing on the back of a motorbike.

WHEN IS STAGE 9?

It’s an earlier start! Tune in from 10:15-17:00 BST to watch Stage 9 of the Giro d’Italia. Watch the action on Eurosport 1, with uninterrupted coverage on discovery+

STAGE 9 PROFILE AND ROUTE MAP

https://sportblogg.net/wp-content/uploads/2022/04/3362505.jpg

– – –

Stream the Giro d’Italia live and on-demand on discovery+. You can also watch all the action live on eurosport.co.uk.

Giro d’Italia

Giro d’Italia Stage 8 as it happened – De Gendt defies the big names to take breakaway win

YESTERDAY AT 07:20

Giro d’Italia

Giro d’Italia 2022 Stage 7 – Route map, how to watch as GC battle looms

13/05/2022 AT 05:58

'Given up' to 'fastest here' – The extraordinary return of 'Thomas the Tank Engine'

Thomas De Gendt (Lotto Soudal) looked like he had “given up” on winning more Grand Tour stages before his explosive renaissance at the Giro d’Italia on Stage 8, according to Dan Lloyd on The Breakaway.

The Belgian returned to his breakaway throne with an outrageous win on Saturday, despite almost single-handedly keeping the leaders ahead of a chase group.

An exhilarating finale saw a front group of four slowly reeled in by a chase pack of five, which contained pre-stage favourites Mathieu van der Poel (Alpecin-Fenix) and Biniam Girmay (Intermarche–Wanty–Gobert Materiaux).

Giro d’Italia

Stage 8 highlights: De Gendt tees up his own victory as Van der Poel denied

4 HOURS AGO

But the leaders had a wildcard in old head De Gendt, who marshalled his inexperienced team-mate Harm Vanhoucke and novices Davide Gabburo (Bardiani–CSF–Faizane) and Jorge Arcas (Movistar) throughout.

De Gendt appeared to be riding to tee up team-mate Vanhoucke for victory, but they swapped roles in the final 3km, allowing the 35-year-old to power down the home straight for another memorable win from the breakaway – 10 years after his only other triumph at the Giro.

“I was working for Harm, [hoping] that he could attack on the [final] climb,” admitted De Gendt afterwards.

“But he said he didn’t have good legs any more so I said in the last 3km to Harm, ‘you ride full and I’m sure I will win the sprint, I’m sure’.

“He did it perfectly until 300m to go so I have to thank Harm a lot that he could pull this off for me.

“If you would have asked me two years ago if I was able to win a stage in the Giro, I would have said no because I was in such bad shape. And now the good legs are coming.”

Stage 8 highlights: Van der Poel frustrated as De Gendt tees up his own win

Former star of The Breakaway Cherrie Pridham, now directeur sportif of Lotto Soudal, gave an emotional interview to Eurosport after the stage.

“With Thomas De Gendt and his experience, he just kept the young boys calm,” she said.

“And we did it, it’s just what the team needed and now we can continue with great momentum.”

When asked what she had said to De Gendt over the team radio during the run-in, Pridham continued: “He was cool, calm and collected as you can imagine.

“He just said ‘I’m the fastest here’ so I had to believe in him.”

With Lotto Soudal’s sprinter, Caleb Ewan, still searching for his first victory in the 2022 Giro, it was a welcome boost for the team.

“Any day in a break, you’ve got to have a reckoning with him because he’s just so strong,” said Eurosport expert and 12-time Giro stage winner Robbie McEwen.

“Thomas the Tank Engine! We said he’s a diesel, but he’s a twin-turbo diesel. He’s got a really powerful sprint that not many people think about because he just seems to grind it out all day long.

“But what I loved was his commitment to the break and it looked when Mathieu van der Poel and Biniam Girmay were going to come back, it [the gap] got to nine seconds, but De Gendt went to the front and fended them off.

“If he hadn’t done that, they would have lost and the sprinters would have come back on them. He basically led himself out to the win. What a ride.”

‘Thomas the Tank Engine!’ – De Gendt lauded after Stage 8 win

De Gendt was once widely considered the greatest breakaway artist in the peloton but arrived at the Giro without a Grand Tour win since the 2019 Tour de France.

“In the years since then… De Gendt has said ‘things have just moved on, I’m not capable of doing what I used to do even though I’m putting out a similar amount of power, things have moved on in terms of how good everyone else is’,” said Lloyd.

“So I felt like he had kind of given up and it felt from that interview like he had kind of given up before the start of this race. So I’m just realised pleased for him.”

The Giro continues with the first five-star stage on Sunday, which features a double ascent of the imposing Blockhaus.

– – –

Stream the Giro d’Italia live and on-demand on discovery+. You can also watch all the action live on eurosport.co.uk.

Giro d’Italia

Return of the Breakaway King: De Gendt delivers on Stage 8

5 HOURS AGO

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Kamna wins atop Etna on Stage 4 as Lopez takes pink and big names struggle

10/05/2022 AT 15:24