Giro d'Italia (st. 3)
Movistar Team brings Ecuadorian back to bunch after mechanical with 8km remaining, yet Richard ends up left out from lead by pile-up with five to go; sits now 1’33” behind Roglic (TJV) overall. Landa inside first group, remains at 1’07”.
The strong 2019 Giro d’Italia start by Richard Carapaz (Movistar Team) has been momentarily truncated on Monday by a series of unfortunate events which took him out of the main field before Orbetello’s finish, end of a very long, windy 220km route from Vinci in Tuscany.
Very well protected until the finale, most notably by Andrey Amador and José Joaquín Rojas -the two riders designated today to cover both the Ecuadorian and Mikel Landa’s shoulders-, Carapaz had to initially regret a mechanical with 8km to go, which forced him to change bikes with Catalan climber Antonio Pedrero. Back to the field extremely quickly with help from Héctor Carretero and Jasha Sütterlin -still recovering from yesterday’s crash-, Richard was gaining places back in the field when a pile-up halfway through the bunch with 5km to go took him out of the front again. Despite his best efforts to bridge back, the Carchi native lost 46″ and was dropped back to 1’33” in the GC standings.
It was an easier finish for Mikel Landa, who crossed the line in 20th place to remain 1’07” behind Primoz Roglic (TJV), just before the halfway point of this difficult first week, full of long routes. Tuesday’s stage four will contain no less than 235km, approaching Rome before an uphill sprint in Frascati.
REACTION / Richard Carapaz:
“It had been a quite nervous stage from the very beginning, but you never look for these things to happen. I rode over a bump, damaged a wheel and had to change bikes with Pedrero. I’m a not-so-tall guy and my team-mates use quite bigger bikes (laughs), so I was pedaling in a difficult position. We then got caught by the pile-up, and it was impossible to bridge back. We’ve lost some seconds, but we aren’t ruling anything out at this point. We remain optimistic and ready to fight for whatever comes – this Giro is still young. My team-mates tried to solve my problem quickly, and I’m so thankful for them because their support was excellent. There’s still lots to come in this race; I know the best days will happen next.”
Cover picture (c): BettiniPhoto