photo credits @Twitter
Fabio Aru (Astana) claimed his second consecutive victory in this year’s Giro d’Italia today, after winning stage 20 in Sestriere.
The Italian rider managed to ride clear of Ryder Hesjedal (Cannondale-Garmin) and Rigoberto Urán (Etixx-Quick-Step) on the final climb of the day – solidifying his spot in 2nd place in the overall general classification.
Race leader, Alberto Contador (Tinkoff-Saxo), found himself struggling on the steep dirt roads of the Colle delle Finestre, during today’s penultimate climb.
From there, Mikel Landa (Astana) was the first rider amongst the GC favorites to attack, subsequently bridging himself to the lone breakaway survivor – Ilnur Zakarin (Katusha).
In turn, Aru, along with several other GC contenders, decided to follow suit with Landa, leaving Contador unable to follow.
Alone and isolated, the maglia rosa, later crested the summit around a minute behind.
However, Contador was able to limit his losses, after making up for lost ground during the descent.
Up ahead, Landa and Zakarin made their way up the final climb together, while Aru et al trailed slightly behind.
However, the two groups would later merge, with Landa setting the tempo for his teammate.
From there, Aru attacked the group, with only a handful of riders able to follow. But, the Astana rider would surge again, this time dispatching all of his breakaway companions.
Aru continued to open up his lead ever so slightly, which proved to be enough to fend-off any challenges from Hesjedal and Uran.
While Aru was unable to dethrone Contador of his race lead, he was nevertheless thrilled with his victory.
“It’s incredible,” he said after the stage. “I can’t believe it still. After I’ve had a few bad days and I’ve suffered, today I managed to win again. Absolutely wonderful, I’m really happy.
“We tried to go really quickly all the way to the finish. Landa was exceptional as usual. He’s a really strong guy.”
Stage 20 Results
ITA 1 ARU, Fabio (ASTANA) 5:12:25
CAN 2 HESJEDAL, Ryder (CANNONDALE – GARMIN) + 18
COL 3 URAN URAN, Rigoberto (ETIXX – QUICK STEP) + 24
ESP 4 LANDA MEANA, Mikel (ASTANA)
NED 5 KRUIJSWIJK, Steven (LOTTO NL – JUMBO) + 34
ESP 6 CONTADOR VELASCO, Alberto (TINKOFF – SAXO) + 2:25
EST 7 KANGERT, Tanel (ASTANA) + 2:28
ITA 8 PELLIZOTTI, Franco (ANDRONI GIOCATTOLI)
CZE 9 KONIG, Leopold (SKY)
ITA 10 ROSA, Diego (ASTANA)
ITA 11 CARUSO, Damiano (BMC RACING)
CRC 12 AMADOR BAKKAZAKOVA, Andrey (MOVISTAR) + 2:34
ITA 13 PIRAZZI, Stefano (BARDIANI CSF) + 3:05
BEL 14 MONFORT, Maxime (LOTTO SOUDAL) + 3:18
FRA 15 GENIEZ, Alexandre (FDJ)
ESP 16 DE LA CRUZ MELGAREJO, David (ETIXX – QUICK STEP) + 6:02
COL 17 ATAPUMA HURTADO, Darwin (BMC RACING)
ITA 18 FELLINE, Fabio (TREK FACTORY RACING) + 7:06
RUS 19 ZAKARIN, Ilnur (KATUSHA) + 7:37
RUS 20 TROFIMOV, Yury (KATUSHA)
POR 21 CARDOSO, Andre Fernando S. Martins (CANNONDALE – GARMIN)
FRA 22 MOINARD, Amaël (BMC RACING)
BLR 23 SAMOILAU, Branislau (CCC SPRANDI POLKOWICE)
ESP 24 INTXAUSTI ELORRIAGA, Benat (MOVISTAR) + 7:42
ESP 25 NIEVE ITURALDE, Mikel (SKY)
General Classification after Stage 20
ESP 1 CONTADOR VELASCO, Alberto (TINKOFF – SAXO) 84:03:30
ITA 2 ARU, Fabio (ASTANA) + 2:02
ESP 3 LANDA MEANA, Mikel (ASTANA) + 3:14
CRC 4 AMADOR BAKKAZAKOVA, Andrey (MOVISTAR) + 6:19
CAN 5 HESJEDAL, Ryder (CANNONDALE – GARMIN) + 9:52
CZE 6 KONIG, Leopold (SKY) + 10:50
NED 7 KRUIJSWIJK, Steven (LOTTO NL – JUMBO) + 11:02
ITA 8 CARUSO, Damiano (BMC RACING) + 12:17
FRA 9 GENIEZ, Alexandre (FDJ) + 16:00
RUS 10 TROFIMOV, Yury (KATUSHA) + 16:23
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