Apart from family, what could be more important than wine and bikes? Of course, there might be the odd rant about other topics on here too...

Friday, May 27, 2005

Basso class

Basso showed his utter class in winning today's TT stage, his second stage of this year's Giro. While so many riders would have abandoned over last weekend's torturous stages with the gastro-intestinal problems that he had, he soldiered through it and got his reward with another stage win today and another opportunity to test himself in a competitive TT ahead of the Tour. Full credit to Dave Z too for another very solid TT stage. He was atop the leaderboard until Basso finished, and ended up third behind Karpets (who was 9 seconds adrift of Basso). Really makes you think that Basso would have kicked butt on GC had he not gotten ill.

Savoldelli finished in fourth, 23 seconds behind Basso, but more importantly he gained some good time gaps on his closer GC rivals ahead of tomorrow's torturous stage. There's no change in the order of the top GC riders - Simoni (who was 10th on the stage 1.34 behind Basso) retains his second place further behind at 2.09 adrift on GC but he did add 20 seconds to his gap over Rujano. Rujano and DiLuca finished with almost identical times (Rujano was 4 seconds behind DiLcua who was 1.55 behind DiLuca), so both will be looking for bonuses over the next couple of stages.

Given the climbs tomorrow, the podium pendulum looks like it might have swung in Rujano's favor, but DiLuca has continued to astound in every aspect of this year's Giro, so I wouldn't count him out - 8 seconds is not a lot of time and it could go either way. And you have to keep an eye on Garate who is only another 5 seconds back. It's going to be tough on whichever of these guys finish off the podium - Rujano and DiLuca, in particular, have added so much to this year's Giro. We can also expect Simoni to go on the attack tomorrow. He said he would either win this year's race or blow it apart trying and to be fair, he's done a decent job of trying to do both. Tomorrow's his last real chance to blow it further apart, but the gods seem to be looking favorably on Il Falco. We'll know soon enough!