The big names in the general classification have made up their minds: this Giro d’Italia will be played out in the Dolomite stage on the penultimate day or, perhaps, directly in the Verona time trial. Today we thought for a moment that someone might try to upset the balance, that someone might try to flush out the rivals before the final showdown, but that was not to be.
The impression, then, was that the breakaway could be reabsorbed more easily than in other stages, for the simple reason that it was mostly made of strong rouleurs who had made the difference on the flat in the early part of the stage and only a couple of climbers. With a Kolovrat (10km at 10%) in the way, it would have been quite difficult for them to resist an overbearing return of the peloton. Instead, Andrea Vendrame (AG2R Citroën), Tobias Bayer (Alpecin-Fenix), Alessandro Tonelli (Bardiani-CSF-Faizanè), Magnus Cort Nielsen (EF Education-EasyPost), Clément Davy, Attila Valter (Groupama-FDJ), Edoardo Affini, Koen Bouwman (Jumbo-Visma), Davide Ballerini, Mauro Schmid (Quick-Step Alpha Vinyl), Edward Theuns (Trek-Segafredo) and Fernando Gaviria (UAE Team Emirates) all gained 11 minutes and the peloton thought about saving as much energy as possible ahead of tomorrow.