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87th Giro d'Italia - Grand Tour

Italy, May 8-30, 2004

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Stage 10 - May 19: Porto Sant’Elpidio - Ascoli Piceno, 146 km

Commentary by Jeff Jones, with additional reporting from Tim Maloney

Complete live report

Live coverage starts: 14:30 CEST
Estimated finish time: 17:15 CEST

14:30 CEST   
Welcome back to Cyclingnews' live coverage of the Giro d'Italia. Yes, we're back on the road again after yesterday's rest day in Porto Sant'Elpidio where the riders took full advantage of the time off to recover from the first 10 days of racing. Today is a fairly short stage, only 146 km between Porto Sant’Elpidio and Ascoli Piceno as we start to move along the Italian east coast. They're actually heading south today. It's a lumpy stage with two Cat. 3 climbs, Monte S. Pietrangeli (km 47.8) and Ripatransone (km 90). Neither are particularly long, and it should still be a stage suited to the sprinters. The Intergiro sprint is at km 109.2 at San Benedetto del Tronto.

There'll be one sprinter less in the Giro however, as Intergiro leader Massimo Strazzer (Saunier Duval) didn't start this morning. After crashing hard in stage 9, Strazzer was in too much pain from his right shoulder. His MRI didn't show any breaks, tendon or ligament damage, but his shoulder was out of alignment and he decided not to start in Stage 10.

14:37 CEST   
There were two other non-starters today following the rest day: Thomas Vaitkus (Colnago-Landbouwkrediet) and Gianni Faresin (Gerolsteiner). That leaves 155 riders in the Giro.

This morning before the start of stage 10, 35 riders from five teams were blood tested by the UCI. The teams: Lampre, Fassa Bortolo, Domina Vacanze, Alessio-Bianchi and Gerolsteiner. All riders were given the all clear to start.

14:45 CEST    48km/98km to go
After 1hr 15mins of racing, the situation on the road is that we have a group of eight riders away: Bo Hamburger and Kyrylo Pospyeyev (Acqua & Sapone-Caffe Mokambo), Paolo Lanfranchi (Panaria-Margres), Raffaele Illiano (Colombia-Selle Italia), Giuseppe Muraglia (Formaggi Pinzolo Fiave'), Fabian Wegmann (Gerolsteiner), Daniele Righi (Lampre), Oliver Zaugg (Saunier Duval-Prodir).

The group attacked after 20 km and have now built up a 3'30 lead over the peloton. They have just climbed the Monte S. Pietrangeli, with mountains jersey wearer (but not leader) Fabian Wegmann crossing first head of Righi and Zaugg.

14:51 CEST    57km/89km to go
Earlier in the stage, just before the break got away, there was a crash involving Simone Masciarelli (Vini Caldirola), Igor Pugaci (De Nardi) and Ivan Quaranta (Formaggi Pinzolo Fiave'). We're not sure how serious it was, but it appears that there are back in the peloton.

39.1 km were covered in the first hour - not surprising for a short stage like this.

15:01 CEST    61km/85km to go
Freddy Bichot (FDJeux.com) has abandoned the Giro at the 52 km mark. He was involved in a crash in the first few days, and has spent a lot of the time hanging onto the back of the bunch. That leaves 154 riders in the race.

The advantage of the eight leaders is 3'12 at the 50 km mark.

15:10 CEST    64km/82km to go
They're on the Monte Gilberto climb now, and one of the breakaways, Giusseppe Muraglia, is having difficulty holding on. This is a short stage but it's certainly lumpy.

The leaders again: Bo Hamburger and Kyrylo Pospyeyev (Acqua & Sapone-Caffe Mokambo), Paolo Lanfranchi (Panaria-Margres), Raffaele Illiano (Colombia-Selle Italia), Giuseppe Muraglia (Formaggi Pinzolo Fiave'), Fabian Wegmann (Gerolsteiner), Daniele Righi (Lampre), Oliver Zaugg (Saunier Duval-Prodir)

15:16 CEST    71km/75km to go
The climb of Monte Gilberto has split the peloton into two pieces, with Alessandro Petacchi in the second group, 20 seconds behind the first. If he rejoins the peloton, there are still another couple of climbs before the run into the finish.

The eight leaders still have a 3'08 advantage to the first peloton.

15:27 CEST    79km/67km to go
Petacchi's peloton has regained the main bunch which contains Maglia Rosa Damiano Cunego. The gap is now down to 2'41.

15:35 CEST    84km/62km to go
Fassa Bortolo has assumed the position on the front of the peloton, and are going about reducing the gap to the eight leaders. It's down to 2'35 now.

15:40 CEST    88km/58km to go
The eight leaders are working hard now as they try to hold off the Fassa led peloton with around 60 km to go. It's going to be difficult. Fabian Wegmann is the best placed rider in the break, lying 33rd at 7'01, so he doesn't present a threat to the Maglia Rosa.

15:44 CEST    89km/57km to go
The leaders are approaching the last climb of Ripatransone, a 4.8 km ascent at 4.3 percent.

Ivan Quaranta (Formaggi) has abandoned. He crashed earlier in the stage, but has also had problems with his condition, or lack thereof, during this race.

15:45 CEST   
The average speed after two hours of racing has fallen to 37.95 km/h. The eight leaders have 2'30 to the peloton now.

15:48 CEST   
The leaders are now approaching the top of the climb of Ripratransone, as Pospyeyev drives the break. Lanfranchi and Muraglia have been dropped.

No surprises as Wegmann wins the sprint from Zaugg, taking more mountain points. Three Fassa Bortolo riders lead the peloton up behind the break, at 2'30.

15:52 CEST    92km/54km to go
At the top of the climb, the peloton has lost some ground and is 3'03 behind the break. Gustov leads them over the top.

15:58 CEST    96km/50km to go
Muraglia has rejoined the leaders but Lanfranchi has been dropped for good and is now back in the peloton. We now have seven leaders: Bo Hamburger and Kyrylo Pospyeyev (Acqua & Sapone-Caffe Mokambo), Raffaele Illiano (Colombia-Selle Italia), Fabian Wegmann (Gerolsteiner), Daniele Righi (Lampre), Oliver Zaugg (Saunier Duval-Prodir), Giusseppe Muraglia (Formaggi Pinzolo).

16:05 CEST    106km/40km to go
Scott Davis (Panaria) drops back to his team car for bottles for his teammates, while the pelootn continues to fly along in pursuit of the seven leaders. The gap is now 2'25. Lotto-Domo and Fassa Bortolo are chasing.

It's perfect weather for racing - sunny with a light breeze blowing, temperatures in the low 20's.

16:07 CEST   
The leaders have just 1 km to go before the Intergiro in San Benedetto del Tronto.

16:08 CEST    109km/37km to go
Righi goes from a long way out to try and take the sprint, but it's Muraglia who gets the Intergiro from Righi and an Acqua e Sapone rider.

Tenax is helping Fassa Bortolo chase as well.

16:12 CEST    112km/34km to go
The peloton comes through the Intergiro at 2'15 behind the seven leaders. Tenax, Lotto and Fassa are working fairly hard, as this is only a short stage and there are seven riders in the break. A 2'15 gap is harder to bring back when the stage is less than 150 km.

16:18 CEST    117km/29km to go
As the leaders pass the 30 km to go mark, they are still cooperating well, but the force of the chase behind them is irresistable. The gap is down to 1'40.

16:23 CEST    118km/28km to go
The gap is coming down fast now as Tenax, Lotto and Fassa up the tempo with 30 km left. The seven leaders have been away for 100 km now.

Hamburger asks for assistance from his team car.

Intergiro full results: Righi got it in the end from Muraglia, Hamburger, Illiano, Zaugg, Pospyeyev, Zaugg and Renzo Mazzoleni was the first rider across in the peloton.

16:26 CEST    121km/25km to go
The peloton is moving like a multicoloured swarm of bees in pursuit of seven leaders, who now have 25 km to go to the finish in Ascoli Piceno. It looks as though it will be a bunch sprint, as we have three teams working towards that goal: Fassa for Petacchi, Lotto for McEwen and Tenax for Klemencic.

16:29 CEST    123km/23km to go
The gap is under a minute now as the race hits the final 25 km. It's all gradually uphill now. Nick Gates is one of the Lotto men doing the work in front. Fellow Aussie Russell Van Hout (Colombia Selle Italia) says g'day to his friends and family on TV.

16:32 CEST    127km/19km to go
We now have less than 20 km to go in the 10th stage, which means that the pace has really lifted in the last hour. The seven leaders are fighting hard, taking their turns. They are 52 seconds in front of the Tenax/Fassa/Lotto led peloton.

16:36 CEST    129km/17km to go
Hamburger is looking strong, but he won't get a chance for the stage win as the gap is now down to just 35 seconds.

In the peloton, Petacchi is sitting in about 20th wheel behind various teammates. McEwen is marking him closely, as is Pollack.

16:38 CEST    131km/15km to go
The peloton is looking quite organised at the moment, with the various teams sticking together around their team leaders.

The breakaways have 15 km as Wegmann looks back to see where the peloton is. It's close - only 15 seconds now.

16:42 CEST    133km/13km to go
It's all over for the break with 13 km to go, after some 115 km in the lead. Hamburger, Righi, Illiano and Wegmann keep going for about 500m but it's absolutely pointless. The Fassa/Tenax/Lotto train continues to rumble along.

16:46 CEST    137km/9km to go
Less than 10 km to go now and Bruseghin drives the pace higher for Fassa Bortolo. Alessio-Bianchi is moving riders up to the front to get Angelo Furlan in position.

16:47 CEST    138km/8km to go
Galetti (Domina) takes a turn in front, followed by Codol (Fassa). Acqua e Sapone is also trying to move up. Eight kilometres to go - no finishing circuit today.

16:49 CEST    139km/7km to go
The bunch races past the 7 km to go and it'll surely be another bunch sprint. Domina, Fassa and Alessio are fighting for position in front of the peloton.

Petacchi is in about 15th wheel. McEwen is close by and Astarloa is there too.

Graziano Gasparre (De Nardi) attacks in a suicidal move.

16:50 CEST    140km/6km to go
Gasparre looks around and two Alessio riders lead the peloton past him with 6 km to go. It's uphill, and they're doing 50 km/h.

16:51 CEST    141km/5km to go
A Fassa train is forming behind the two Alessio riders - Ljungqvist and Rastelli. Petacchi is up there.

The peloton is splitting due to the pressure on this steady climb.

16:52 CEST    142km/4km to go
Ljungqvist and Rastelli keep going as McGee attacks with 4 km to go! This will probably meet with the same end as Gasparre's move, but he's good over 4 km.

16:52 CEST    143km/3km to go
McGee drives hard and gets a five second gap over the peloton, which is splitting up. His gap is impressive at this speed. Cioni is working on the front.

16:53 CEST    143km/3km to go
McGee gets over the top of a climb but is swamped by the bunch. Serpellini (Gerolsteiner) leads them, then a Lampre trio. Petacchi is still about 15th.

16:54 CEST    144km/2km to go
The Fassa train forms behind Lampre with 2 km to go and the speed lifts.

16:54 CEST   
Lampre has three men in front with 2 km to go as McEwen finds Petacchi's wheel. Phonak comes up beside with Usov. It's a real battle in front.

Now Fassa in front with three men.

16:55 CEST    145km/1km to go
They hit the 1 km to go mark and Petacchi is in fourth wheel behind three teammates. Zanotti seems to have Petacchi's wheel now

16:57 CEST    146km/0km to go
Borrajo and Zanotti fight for PEtacchi's wheel then Usov and Rodriguez come up. There's a lot of pushing. Petacchi is led out by Velo again and goes early on the left. This time he makes no mistake and wins it from Zanotti! Very polished. He's congratulated by Rodriguez after the line. 5 wins!!

Petacchi applauded as he crossed the line, afterwards thanking his teammates for a perfect job today. He has made up for his loss in stage 9.

The jury might have something to say about the pushing going on behind him - Borrajo and Zanotti were fighting fairly hard for Petacchi's wheel! Nauduzs appeared to give Lombardi a push too, so we'll see.


1 Alessandro Petacchi (Ita) Fassa Bortolo                         3.24.17
2 Marco Zanotti (Ita) Vini Caldirola-Nobili Rubinetterie     
3 Andris Nauduzs (Lat) Domina Vacanze                            
4 Magnus Backstedt (Swe) Alessio-Bianchi  
5 Alejandro Albert Borrajo (Arg) Ceramiche Panaria-Margres 
6 Jan Svorada (Cze) Lampre
7 Alexandre Usov (Blr) Phonak Hearing Systems   
8 Olaf Pollack (Ger) Gerolsteiner          
9 Simone Cadamuro (Ita) De Nardi                       
10 Manuele Mori (Ita) Saunier Duval-Prodir 
11 Marlon Alirio Perez Arango (Col) Colombia-Selle Italia
12 Fred Rodriguez (USA) Acqua & Sapone-Caffe Mokambo 

General classification after stage 10

1 Damiano Cunego (Ita) Saeco                                     45.23.32
2 Gilberto Simoni (Ita) Saeco                                        0.10
3 Franco Pellizotti (Ita) Alessio-Bianchi                            0.28
4 Yaroslav Popovych (Ukr) Landbouwkrediet-Colnago                    0.40
5 Giuliano Figueras (Ita) Ceramiche Panaria-Margres                  0.52
6 Stefano Garzelli (Ita) Vini Caldirola-Nobili Rubinetterie          1.15
7 Andrea Noe' (Ita) Alessio-Bianchi                                  1.17
8 Serguei Gontchar (Ukr) De Nardi                                        
9 Dario David Cioni (Ita) Fassa Bortolo                              1.19
10 Eddy Mazzoleni (Ita) Saeco                                        1.29

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