The Shark delivers Italy’s first stage win while Mikel Landa becomes the King of the Mountains.
Vincenzo Nibali found the way to success again one year after he turned the classification of the Giro d’Italia upside down. Today he outsprinted Mikel Landa to impose himself in Bormio on the Giro 100’s queen stage that included the Mortirolo and two ascents of the Stelvio. Tom Dumoulin retained the lead this time although the Dutchman was forced to stop to answer the call of the nature at the bottom of the last climb, and his advantage on GC has been reduced to 31 seconds over Nairo Quintana and 1’12’’ over Nibali.
1 – Vincenzo Nibali (Bahrain – Merida) – 222km in 6h24’22”, average speed 34.654km/h
2 – Mikel Landa Meana (Team Sky) s.t.
3 – Nairo Quintana (Movistar Team) a 12″
Luis León Sanchez (Astana Pro Team) was first on top of the Mortirolo – the race’s Scarponi Climb – while Mikel Landa Meana (Team Sky) was first to pass the Stelvio’s Cima Coppi, the highest point of the Giro 100.
Today’s stage winner Vincenzo Nibali said: “I’m really happy to have won the beautiful stage, a very spectacular one, a very difficult one with the highest peaks up the Stelvio; stage that includes the Mortirolo and the Stelvio twice will be remembered for sure. However, I’m not able to tell which one of my victories is the nicest. My only disappointment is to not have been able to raise my hands up in the air. My first attack up the Stelvio wasn’t a very strong one but the second one was. The few words exchanged with Nairo was to cooperate together. We’ll fight till the end in Milan. It’s not easy. This week is very hard and there is the terrain suitable for attacks, especially for Nairo Quintana who wants to reduce the gap on Tom Dumoulin.”
The Maglia Rosa Tom Dumoulin said: “I saved the jersey but if you consider that I chased alone for the last 35km and I only lost two minutes, my legs were very good. I had the legs to follow Quintana and Nibali today. That’s why I’m very disappointed to have lost time today because of a problem I had. When it happened, the race was on, it was full gas and Steven Kruijswijk was at the front. It was a different situation to Quintana’s crash on Sunday. I couldn’t expect my rivals to let Kruijswijk at the front. It’s definitely not finished but I have to overcome my anger to look further into the Giro. I’m angry with myself.”
Stage 17 – Tirano-Canazei (Val di Fassa) 219km – total elevation 3,500m