Giro d'Italia (st. 4)
Movistar Team duo part of gruelling racing in the Giro; Formolo (TCG) wins solo in La Spezia as Giovanni takes 4th
The 2015 Giro d'Italia has already offered an intense, spectacular stage on its fourth day of racing, which the Movistar Team riders have profited from to show their character. The squad directed by Chente García Acosta and José Luis Jaimerena fought for the stage win over the entire 150km parcours between Chiavari and La Spezia, with only three rated climbs but restless from start to finish, as Andrey Amador and Giovanni Visconti made part of yet another enomous breakaway.
The Costa Rican was the most active pursuing the moves into a 30-man escape that gained more than ten minutes over the field. Furious chasing from Tinkoff and Etixx, from early into the stage, and Astana, pulling with almost their whole roster kilometers later, reduced considerably the gap as the two main lead groups, one with Amador and a pursuit behind with Visconti, made it back together before the decisive climb: Biassa (Cat-3), just after the first passage across the line with over 13km remaining.
An attack by Davide Formolo (TCG) forced Giovanni to react, together with Frenchman Amaël Moinard (BMC), yet the strength of his rival and the increasing pace into the bunch -an attack by Fabio Aru (AST) shook things further- dropped him back to the main field, where he still could take 4th into the sprint. The GC is now led by Australian Simon Clarke (OGE), with Visconti in 7th spot (+29") as Intxausti and Fernández (+4'22") held the favourites' pace till the last climb.
With no room for relax, the Giro will tackle its first mountain-top finish tomorrow on day five, over 152km towards the Abetone (Cat-2; 17km at over 5%, with some demanding sections.)
REACTION / Giovanni Visconti: “You could argue we missed out on a chance to win, but I couldn’t really think Davide would make it to the finish. Jumping with 2km from the foot of the climb seemed like a suicide, something crazy: we were all riding on full steam, all riders were pretty tired and I was personally waiting until the ascent so I could try it if I found the legs, which I suspected I had. I went after him, thinking I could reach him down, but he resisted fantastically well and there’s nothing to say – you can only applaud him after such a valiant display. Should have I jumped with him, things might have been different, but it has no sense to think about that.
“We had started off with the aim of sending only Andrey into the break, but soon we found out there were 20, 30 riders like in yesterday’s stage, and seeing that I was doing strong, I jumped and joined him. I don’t feel like we’ve spent more energy than those behind: the group was dead tired, only 7 or 8 of the ones in the bunch came together after the final climb – it must have been really, really hard for everyone.
“Any more chances? Before today’s effort, I was already thinking about Wednesday. Abetone is pretty close to him, I know the climb well and I feel in good form. I’m doing well on the climbs, since I lost two kilos compared to my normal weight, and I know that the final 4k are easier; if I make it with the top guys through the steepest part, that should favour me. Let’s hope I can recover well – if the bunch doesn’t break into pieces, I’d like to give it another try tomorrow.”