The Take Out | Giro Stages 1-3 - What you need to know
· In the opening TT, some big favourites flew
Primož Roglič and Vincenzo Nibali both delivered in Stage 1’s TT, coming home in first and third respectively. The big surprise was Simon Yates though, who’s continued his recent form uptick in TT rides. Finishing second, only 19 seconds back from Roglič, is a huge victory for the Brit, who’s walking the walk after talking the talk pre-race.
· Some favourites flopped
Where was Tom Dumoulin in the TT though? The 2017 Giro winner and TT World Champion finished 28 seconds off the pace, in what was a poor showing and worrying form marker. Just in case you thought Esteban Chaves was a handy second card for Mitchelton-SCOTT, he was 59 seconds back, while Mikel Landa also lost over a minute.
· Bora-Hansgrohe’s big choice is paying off
Sam Bennett was happy to speak openly about his disappointment that Bora-Hansgrohe had chosen Pascal Ackermann to lead the sprints at this Giro, That was probably fair enough too, as the Irishman took seven Grand Tour wins last year. Beating an all-star sprint field in the first sprinters’ rendezvous, Ackermann showed straight away his potential though.
· The Lotto-Soudal train is still getting into its groove
With 800m to go on Stage 2, the four men leading the peloton were wearing Lotto-Soudal kits - at that point it seemed unimaginable that they could lose, yet somehow did. On Stage 3, the team struggled to get Caleb Ewan into position and he wasn’t a part of the sprint. Those two stages showed that the team is still finding its feet, and with limited opportunities here for sprinters, they need to sort it out soon.
· Viviani won’t be happy
2018’s best sprinter appeared to have snatched his first win of this year’s Giro on Stage 3, crossing the line in Orbetello and pointing to that sparkling new Tricolore jersey. He was relegated for veering in the sprint though, giving Fernando Gaviria the win. From our point of view, it wasn’t on purpose, but he veers pretty hard left into Arnaud Demare as he opens the sprint.
· There’s no such thing as a boring first week at the Giro
Between the rainy weather and some sketchy finales, it’s been a pretty standard opening few days at the Giro d’Italia. Even the opening TT wasn’t any fun; just ask Hiroki Nishimura of Nippo-Vini Fantini-Faizane who finished outside the time cut. You’d be pretty flat after getting cut on day one.
See you back at the social club,