Vincenzo Nibali Climbs to Stage Victory in Tirreno-Adriatico 2012 as Chris Horner Keeps Overall Lead

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03/11/2012| 0 comments
by Thomas A. Valentinsen
Vincenzo Nibali on his way to a stage victory in Tirreno-Adriatico 2012. Photo Fotoreporter Sirotti.
Vincenzo Nibali on his way to a stage victory in Tirreno-Adriatico 2012. Photo Fotoreporter Sirotti.

Vincenzo Nibali Climbs to Stage Victory in Tirreno-Adriatico 2012 as Chris Horner Keeps Overall Lead

Italy's Vincenzo Nibali (Liquigas-Cannondale) won stage five of the 2012 Tirreno-Adriatico from Martinsicuro to the ski resort of Prati di Tivo and thereby moved up to third overall in the general classification.

Italy's Vincenzo Nibali (Liquigas-Cannondale) won stage five of the 2012 Tirreno-Adriatico from Martinsicuro to the ski resort of Prati di Tivo and thereby moved up to third overall in the general classification.

Nibali attacked alone with four kilometers of the climb remaining and finished 16 seconds ahead of Roman Kreuziger (Team Astana) of the Czech Republic. Chris Horner of RadioShack-Nissan finished third, also 16 seconds back.

Horner kept the race leader's blue jersey and Kreuziger is now second overall, tailing five seconds behind. Nibali is now third at 12 seconds and a contender for the overall victory when Tirreno-Adriatico 2012 ends on Tuesday.

"I'm happy to win today. But we'll have to wait for the time trial to see who wins overall. 12 seconds is a lot to pull back but we'll see what happens," Nibali commented and added "I've got a great team that will help me during Monday's stage, so I think the time trial will decide things. I think it'll be more difficult to beat Kreuziger than Horner."

"I knew the central part of the climb was the hardest. Horner went hard there and caused a selection. When we caught him I saw that everyone else were working hard on catching their breath, so I went for it. I felt good and so did the same effort I did to win the stage in Oman. I've been focused on winning Tirreno-Adriatico all week and I want to win it. Peter (Sagan) partially accepted his mistake yesterday and he worked hard for me today, which shows there no problem in the team."

Like Nibali, Horner also expects this year's Tirreno-Adriatico to be decided in Tuesday's 9.3 kilometer time trial.

"It'll be close for sure. Kreuziger and I are very close matches on the time trial bike and I only have a five-second lead. I think the time trial can go either way. I know I just need to go incredibly hard for the nine kilometers of the race" Horner analyzed.

Horner is 40 and is one of the oldest riders in the peloton, but he still enjoys racing.

"I didn't expect to be racing at fourty. I thought I'd be riding my bike at weekends and working a different job. As the years have passed, the level has gotten better and better, but I'm enjoying myself immensely at the moment."

"My Secret? I train, I sleep and I eat. It sounds simple but that's it. I can train all day and be happy. The most difficult thing is to say no to family, friends and sometimes to sponsors, because they take you time. I understand the time I need to dedicate towards finding my absolute top form and in that period you need to say no."

Watch video highlights from every stage of the 2012 Tirreno-Adriatico in our video section .

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