Giro d'Italia (st. 12)
Ion Izagirre (7th) leads Movistar Team's performance on top of the Monte Berico, after hellish, rainy fight en route to Vicenza; Intxausti strengthens lead in KOM standings
Philippe Gilbert (BMC) took victory in Vicenza after day twelve in the 2015 Giro d'Italia rose again over all expectations of competitiveness and spectacle. The Movistar Team went on yet another leading role as Intxausti fought for the Maglia Azzurra once again, the Basque climber to wear it for the third time after a brave effort on Thursday, while Izagirre, Amador and Visconti insisted on shaking the group and keep their overall chances.
Beñat conceded one of his two points of advantage over Simon Geschke in Castelnuovo (Cat-4), to later gain seven (61 to 53) to the German in Crosara (Cat-3), a short, hard climb where the bunch broke apart with only 25 riders making it across, including Andrey, Ion and Beñat. Visconti, shortly dropped back into the rainy descent, bridged to the front and attacked into the non-rated ascent of Perarolo, but was quickly countered by race leader Alberto Contador (TCS), who left no room to his rivals' chances.
The Blues initially seeked to avoid the sprint -a brief attack from Ion Izagirre in search for late leaders Pellizotti (AND) and Kangert (AST)- and ultimately pulled the group with Intxausti himself, to later claim places number seven (Ion), 15 (Visconti) and 20 (Amador), no more than eleven seconds behind the stage winner. The overall remains the same in its top ten places, with the Italian and the Costa Rican respectively seventh and ninth. Sprinters will be back on Friday, with an absolutely flat, 147km journey towards Jesolo.