I was right about one thing; Nibali, Landa, Carapaz and (just about) Lopez are the strongest climbers in this race. Yates is trying to back up his bark but is yet to deal any damage. Roglic’s on the edge of a blow up… can he survive until Verona?
As a Nibali fan, I have obviously enjoyed the recent stages. But I’m also enjoying the form of the Movistar pair. Yates and especially Roglic were electric in the early season and attracted a lot of attention; but the Giro is a different beast. It’s a pleasure to watch pedigree Grand Tour riders peak for the big occasion. When will I learn to stop worrying about Nibali’s form? Anyway…
The Just Profile
Stage 17 to Anterselva has no reason to be a GC day but will be tense because riders need time. Everybody will want to improve their position. Nibali needs to distance himself from Roglic and close in on Carapaz. Carapaz needs to distance himself from both Nibali and Roglic. Landa needs to leapfrog Roglic and Nibali. Alternatively, Roglic may want to take time on Nibali on a stage which might suit him better than many in the final week. And Yates will probably do something.
Most of the rolling 181 km stage will pass without issue but the last 6 km of the final climb average above 8%. The breakaway will almost certainly mop up the stage – but I’ll be very surprised if we don’t see somebody pinch some seconds.
Launch a Fiver – Mattia Cattaneo 33/1
Oh yeah, I’m on Cattaneo. It’s coming. The win is coming.
Launch a Fiver – Eddie Dunbar 33/1
Ireland’s Eddie Dunbar is a rider that has widely impressed throughout the race. He looks like the most likely stage winner for the artists formerly known as Team Sky. I didn’t expect to be saying that in week three of the Giro d’Italia…
Launch a Fiver – Diego Ulissi 33/1
Diego Ulissi is somebody who may relish tomorrow’s gentler approach to the final climb blah blah blah. And even if he doesn’t… LET ME BELIEVE!
Launch a Quid – Giovanni Carboni 250/1
Is it finally Bardiani time? Inspired by former team leader Giulio Ciccone’s victory, Bardiani should be on the prowl tomorrow. Giovanni Carboni is their best climber. It’s time for him to shine.
Launch a Quid – Matteo Montaguti 250/1
Matteo Montaguti is riding well, deep into this Giro d’Italia. Tomorrow’s climb will be on his limit, but 250/1 is attractive…
Any Other Business
There’s so many other names to look at. Can Jan Bakelants (80/1) save AG2R?
Ben O’Connor (100/1) for a very quiet Dimension Data?
Erm, Italian biathlete Johann Passler was born close to the stage finish. He took a bronze medal at the 1988 Winter Olympics. Honestly.