Ferrari Takes Stage 11 of Giro
The most controversial rider of the 2012 Giro d'Italia has won Stage 11.
The most controversial rider of the 2012 Giro d'Italia has won Stage 11. Roberto Ferrari (Androni Giacottoli-Venezuela), who caused a Stage 3 crash that took down Mark Cavendish (Sky) and then-maglia rosa Taylor Phinney (BMC), won a bunch sprint to win the flat, 255-km run from Assisi to Montecatini Terme in 6:49:05. Francesco Chicchi (Omega Pharma-Quick Step) finished second, and Tomas Vaitkus (Orica-GreenEdge) took third. Joaquim Rodriguez (Katusha) remains the maglia rosa.
Six riders made an early break. They were Olivier Kaisen (Lotto-Belisol), Adrian Saez (Euskaltel-Euskadi), Simone Ponzi (Astana), Stefan Denifl (Vacansoleil-DCM), Manuele Boaro (Saxo Bank), and Mickael Delage (FDJ-Big Mat). The sextet ran up a 5-minute lead before the peloton began to reel in the escapees.
On the Category 3 Poggio alla Croce, the escape's advantage was 1:50. The break, however, stretched it out to 3:00. Sky and Rabobank began to chase, and the gap began to fall for good.
The break's lead fell from 1:00 with 62 km remaining to 0:30 with 43 km left. Thirteen km later, Boaro and Saez dropped their companions. Boaro put 0:30 into Saez, whom the peloton reeled in. With about 15 km left, Boaro led the field by 0:09.
The bunch reeled in Boaro just short of the day's last climb, the Category 4 Vico. Mirko Selvaggi (Vacansoleil-DCM) attacked but was caught. Giovanni Visconti (Movistar) sparked a four-man move that Michele Scarponi (Lampre-ISD) and Roman Kreuziger (Astana) joined, but the move was clearly dangerous, and the peloton shut it down.
Sky took over at the front. With 2 km to go, Alessandro Ballan (BMC) sortied, but Sky rode down the Italian. Visconti took another unsuccessful dig.
With 400 m left, Sacha Modolo (Colnago-CSF Inox) slid out on a turn and took other riders with him. Vaitkus, who was in the lead, bolted for the finish line, but Ferrari overtook the Lithuanian to win.
After making himself the most unpopular rider in the 2012 Giro by causing a crash in Stage 3, Ferrari was elated.
"This is the victory of a lifetime," the Italian said. "Winning a stage in the Giro is the best thing for an Italian rider. And then I wanted to redeem myself after what had happened in the early stages."
Not everyone agreed that Ferrari had redeemed himself. In a postrace interview, Cavendish congratulated the Italian on his victory but added that Ferrari was lucky to still be in the race. The Manxman also expressed disappointment that he could not win the stage, which finished 15 km from his home.
In the overall, Rodriguez leads Paolo Tiralongo (Astana) by 0:17 and Kreuziger at 0:32. Stage 12 will feature three Category 3 climbs and one Category 2 ascent. The summit of the day's last climb is 5 km from the end of the 155-km ride from Seravezza to Sestri Levante. A late-stage break could be in the cards. Who will be in it? Check in at www.roadcycling.com and find out!