Luxemburger Frank Schleck buried himself for 14K today (from the 20K to go until Basso countered a break and went clear on his own at 6K to go) to set up a great win for Ivan Basso. He tore the race apart driving the pace for 14K up some pretty steep hills. In what other sport does a person bury themselves in a race so that someone else can win?
Simoni, who came in third, gained a little over 30 seconds on Savoldelli, while Jose Rujano - from the wild card Selle Italia team - outsprinted Simoni at the line to take second giving him (Rujano) enough bonus seconds to move into third, 12 seconds ahead of DiLuca who lost over a minute to Savoldelli and a minute and a half to Simoni and Rujano.
The GC top five after this stage are Savoldelli, Simoni (currently 58 seconds back), Rujano (1.24 back), DiLuca (1.26 back) and Garate (2.11 back).
Savoldelli will be hoping to build up his advantage in tomorrow's time trial ahead of Saturday's brutal stage to Sestriere, where you can be sure Simoni and anyone else with Maglia Rosa ambitions still intact will be attacking Savoldelli on the steep slopes of the Colle della Finestre.
In tomorrow's TT, there is a 7K climb that has some steep pitches but Savoldelli is by far the best of the top five racers in the time trial discipline. In the previous TT, all of the other GC contenders lost time to Savoldelli - DiLuca (51 seoconds), Simoni (2.04), Garate (1.23), Rujano (4.20). Which might mean that we'll see Sergui Honchar, who is currently in sixth place at 4.05 behind Savoldelli, return to a top 5 GC spot - and possibly even a podium spot - considering he was only 7 seconds behind Savoldelli in the previous TT (a time that he and many pundits were disappointed with).