21/05/16 - 10:05
Farra d'Alpago - Corvara in Badia
Giro d'Italia • Stage14

Farra d'Alpago - Corvara in Badia

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Here's your new race leader, Steven Kruijswijk. The Dutchman has 41 seconds over Nibali, 1:32 on Chaves, 3:06 on Valverde and 3:15 on Amador.


Here he is, the winner of the day - with the three others in his wake...


Vincenzo Nibali crosses the line 36 seconds down on Chaves - it's by no means a disaster for the Shark, but he will be concerned at having been dropped by his rivals on the final climb - especially after putting in the first attack that dropped Valverde, the big loser of the day...


Fourth place for Darwin Atapuma, who just has nothing left in the tank after being caught by his pursuers with 2km to go.


Heartbreak for Georg Preidler, who seemed destined to take the win after opening up the sprint, but was pipped at the death. The Giant-Alpecin slams his hands on the bars in frustration as he crosses the line...


Second place for Steven Kruijswijk of LottoNL-Jumbo who will take the maglia rosa tonight.


It looked destined for one Colombian, but in the end it was another - Esteban Chaves of Orica-GreenEdge - who took a quite splendid win.


The big Austrian leads on the final bend but Esteban Chaves jumps on the pedals and takes the win!


Preidler takes it up...


Who's going to win this? There are bonus seconds too - and whatever happens, Kruijswijk will be in pink.


Kruijswijk and Chaves reach Atapuma, who latches in behind Preidler. Four leaders now, with Nibali and Siutsou at 15 seconds.


Atapuma is going to be caught... heartbreak for the Colombian. The road is heading back uphill and he'll have nothing left in the tank when he's caught.


Just 10 seconds for Atapuma, with Nibali as 25. They can all see each other...


It looks like Atapuma will take his first win in three years... meanwhile, back with the Valverde group, Amador, the pink jersey, is pedalling squares on the Muro del Gatto.


Atapuma is over the wall and now blasting down the descent towards the finish. Nibali has caught Suitsou.


Nibali just 17 seconds behind now - the same advantage Atapuma has over the others. This is exciting.


Here's that ramp - the Muro del Gatto, the Cat's Wall! Atapuma as 21 seconds to play with. Her has Chaves, Kruijswijk and Preidler in pursuit - Suitsou has been dropped.


Atapuma getting in his best aero position as he bids to hold on. Remember, there's that 19% ramp coming up - that could be the death knell for the Colombian.


The gaps are getting smaller and smaller. 25 seconds now for the four chasers and 52 for Nibali. The Valverde group is still over three minutes back so the Spanish veteran will slip down the standings while Amador will lose the pink jersey.


Atapuma still has 35 seconds to play with over the four chasers, with Nibali a further 30 seconds back.


Mechanical issue for Jow Dombrowski, who seems to have his chain stuck at the worst moment.


Here was the attack which dropped Nibali earlier...


We had no time check on Zakarin, Uran and Majka, who must have been somewhere between Nibali and the Valverde chasing group.


The Valverde-Amador group is 3:18 down on Atapuma so we're going to see a big shake up in the overall standings today. Movistar the big losers.


Over the top goes lone leader Atapuma. The 28-year-old Colombian from BMC has 36 seconds to play with over four chasers now, because Chaves and Kruijswijk have caught Siutsou and Priedler just before the summit. Meanwhile, Nibali passes over at 1:08 and so it could all yet come back together on this long descent.


Atapuma is approaching the summit of this climb - he has less than a minutes now on the Chaves group, and 12 seconds on Siutsou and Preidler.


Chaves and Kruijswijk just 1:15 down on Atapuma now, with Nibali 20 seconds back and the Valverde group a further two minutes back!


Atapuma may not win this stage... because Kruijswijk and Chaves are only 1:27 behind! What's m ore, Preidler and Suitsou are closing in too. Nibali has fallen about 20 seconds back already. The whole race blown apart on this climb.


NIBALI DROPPED! The Italian can't keep up with Chaves, and the Colombian drops him as he rides on in pursuit of Kruijswijk.


ATTACK: Kruijswijk rides clear! Superb stuff from the Dutchman. Chaves and Nibali are following, but Majka, Uran and Zakarin can't keep up.


Valverde leads this chasing group with Pozzovivo, Dombrowski, Nieve and Amador, the pink jersey. Scarponi is there too, sandbagging Valverde. They are 25 seconds down on the six-man group of favourites: Nibali, Zakarin, Majka, Kruisjwijk, Uran and Chaves.


Could this be Darwin Atapuma's day? The tiny Colombian passes under the 25-to-go banner and he has a decent lead over Siutsou and Preidler.


Nibali rides in a trio with Kruijswijk and Chaves, with Zakarin and Majka and Uran just a few seconds behind. Meanwhile, on the front Atapuma has attacked to drop the other leaders. It's all happening!


That's a big surprise there - Valverde had looked so strong but he just can't keep up with this pace. Already 20 seconds down...


NIBALI ATTACKS! The Skark increases the tempo and Valverde is broken! The Spanish veteran has no answer to this acceleration. Kruijswijk, Chaves and Zakarin manage to cover it, but Valverde has been dropped - as has Amador and Pozzovivo.


The Cunego chase group is 1:35 down on the three leaders. I say chase group - it's just the Italian, in the blue jersey, and Maxim Monfort of Lotto Soudal.


So, our three leaders at the moment are: Darwin Atapuma (BMC), Georg Preidler (Giant-Alpecin) and Kanstantsin Siutsou (Dimension Data). They have 3:50 over the main pack of favourites, with a few riders from the initial break - such as Damiano Cunego and Nicolas Roche - somewhere in between.


Amador is back! Chapeau! The question is - can he hold on over this final climb?


Meanwhile, Andrey Amador has returned to within 20 seconds of the big favourites after a quite astonishing descent! What a superb ride by the Costa Rican. But he'll suffer on the next climb, for sure...


The two leaders have been joined by Georg Priedler as they hit the start of the sixth categorised climb, the Cat.2 Passo Valparola (11.5km at 5.8%).


Atapuma leading Siutsou on this fast descent. One of them should win the stage, but it's still early days - there's another large climb, plus a stinging 19% ramp after that, ahead of the finish.


Scarponi leads the favourites over the summit 4:10 down on the two leaders, Siutsou and Atapuma. Amador himself crosses at 5:03.


Amador is about to be caught by a small group that is being led by Jakob Fuglsang.


Scarponi is pulling all manner of faces as he continues setting the pace for Nibali on the front of the group of main favourites. Amador is almost a minute further back now, so will struggle to return on the descent.


Atapuma sprints to pip Siutsou over the summit of the Passo Giau. Up goes the zippers and the bring on the descent. Preidler is third across a bit later on - no time check as yet.


The leaders are now above the snow line and it's Siutsou still dictating the tempo - until Atapuma comes through for a rare, unseated pull. They're near the top now.


Amador has been dropped! The Costa Rican has finally been beaten by this Astana pace-setting - and Zeits, from the break, has joined Nibali and Scarponi on the front. They're 5:10 down on the two leaders. Amador is now 20 seconds back.


For the moment Amador is surviving in this group of favourites, but the maglia rosa is right on the back and he may not be able to hold onto the lead today. Nibali, Valverde, Kruijswijk, Chaves, Uran, Majka, Zakarin, Pozzovivo, Dombrowski and Amador are in this group, with Nieve just dropped.


The main group of favourites is just 12-strong now. All the big guns are there but Jakob Fuglsang has been dropped, with only Michele Scarponi there now for Nibali. Bob Jungels has been dropped too, the white jersey having a tough day after losing his pink jersey.


Ruben Plaza has been dropped by Atapuma and Siutsou.


Plaza is caught and so we have three in the lead now, as Atapuma gives Siutsou a break by taking a pull at the front. Astana's pace means the group of 20 favourites are now just 6:30 back.


The two chasers have the leader in their sights now. Siutsou channeling all those days spent dictating a solid tempo for Team Sky and Bradley Wiggins. He's rolling along well, but you sense the danger man may be Atapuma - although the Colombian hates descending, and there are still two more of those.


Siutsou and Atapuma's acceleration has seen the gap come down to 22 seconds for Plaza. The pack is now just 25-strong, four of whom are from Astana. They're eight minutes adrift for now.


Siutsou has ridden clear of the other pursuers - until he's joined by Atapuma. Roche and Preidler don't have the legs to follow. The Irishman has dropped back but the Austrian does his best to return...


This pace by Astana has already whittled down the main pack to about 40 riders. Meanwhile, Plaza is back into his groove and has returned to 55 seconds ahead of his four pursuers.


Siutsou, Roche, Preidler and Atapuma ride in pursuit of Plaza. They've opened up a gap over the other chasers - a small one, mind.


CHANGING OF THE GUARD: Astana come to the front now to take over the reins from Movistar. No surprise there. Nibali is preparing his terrain.


Siutsou, the former Sky rider, is leading the chase. Plaza's lead is down to just 30 seconds now. It looks like Cunego has returned into this group, too.


Plaza is really pedalling squares as he rides under the 50-to-go banner - and his lead has already been slashed to 1:10. The peloton is still nine minutes down and has just caught a cluster of riders from the initial break, including Diego Ulissi and two of his Lampre-Merida team-mates.


Plaza rolls onto the Cat.1 Passo di Giau (9.8km at 9%). He has 1:40 on his pursuers and he's on the steep 14% segment at the start.


Both Amador and Nibali are riding off the back of the peloton - they must have both stopped for a call of nature together.


Plaza's advantage is up to 1:55 over the chasing group, who will need to get their act together because the Spaniard is no mean climber. You'd think Sky would do something, what with both Roche and Lopez in this group of a dozen riders in pursuit.


The chasers are: Atapuma (BMC), De La Cruz (Etixx-QuickStep), Lopez (Team Sky), Zeits (Astana), Moser (Cannondale), Siutsou (Dimension Data), Monfort (Lotto Soudal), Preidler (Giant-Alpecin), Kochetkov (Katusha), Roche (Sky), Busato (Wilier-Southeast), Denifl (IAM), Silin (Katusha).


Plaza is on one of the two uphill lumps ahead of the main course today, the Passo Giau. He has 1:35 over the chasers and 9:20 over the main pack.


Kanstantsin Siutsou is in this reformed chase group, but no Ulissi, and so the Belorussian from Dimension Data is the new virtual maglia rosa. Andrey Amador is rolling along in the main pack with his Movistar team-mates. There's no immediate concern what with two more huge climbs on the horizon.


Nicolas Roche and Moreno Moser have joined the first chasing group - in fact, they all have. So it's a bigger group now riding in pursuit of Plaza. They're 42 seconds down.


Confirmation of that withdrawal by Hesjedal, who has the ubiquitous stomach problems.


Plaza, who joined Orica-GreenEdge from Lampre-Merida over the winter after stage wins in both the Tour and Vuelta last season, crests the summit of the Campolongo in pole position. He has 45 seconds over his chasing trio. The next group on the road are a further 25 seconds back.


Another withdrawal to report - and it's a big one: Ryder Hesjedal (Trek-Segafredo) - the 2012 champion - has pulled out. That's a surprise - the Canadian veteran was going well on GC and only 4:48 down in 14th place. He must have picked up an illness.


Plaza won the intermediate sprint at Corvara and is now on to the fourth climb of the day, the Cat.2 Passo Campolongo (6km at 5.8%. The Spaniard has 35 seconds over the three Ds of Atapuma, De La Cruz and Lopez, and nine minutes over the peloton.


Movistar, Astana and then Tinkoff front the peloton as they crest the summit of the Passo Gardena just under nine minutes down on the lone leader, Ruben Plaza, who is coming across the finish line here in Corvara ahead of a loop out that takes in three more climbs, including the fearsome Passo Giau.


Plaza has 15 seconds over his three chasers, while a group of nine is a bit further down the road: Domont, Zeits, Moser, Monfort, Siutsou, Cunego, Preidler, Kochetkov and Roche.


Plaza soloes over the summit of the Passo Gardena with a small gap over his three pursuers: David Lopez (Sky), Darwin Atapuma (BMC) and David De La Cruz (Etixx-QuickStep). That's the smallest of today's six climbs completed.


ATTACK: And Spaniard Ruben Plaza (Orica-GreenEdge) has pinged off the front of the leading group near the summit.


The leaders have gone through the feedzone at Plan de Gralba and are now onto the third of six climbs: the Cat.3 Passo Gardena (5.8%). Lopez has been reeled in and rides alongside his Sky team-mate Roche.


It's Jose Joaquim Rojas who leads the pack for Movistar as they approach the summit of the Passo Sella, which they crest shortly after catching Giacomo Berlato, who was in the initial break. The gap is 8:32.


Over the top of the Passo Sella goes David Lopez - and behind it's his team-mate Nicolas Roche who takes second place ahead of BMC's Darwin Atapuma, and then a cluster of other escapees - including Cunego, Wellens and Plaza. The gap between the two Sky riders was 26 seconds.


Another withdrawal: Belgian Bert de Backer of Giant-Alpecin.


Carlos Betancur, who was with the break, is now back with the pack pulling for his Movistar team-mates Alejandro Valverde and Andrey Amador.


David Lopez is channelling Mikel Nieve and rides solo on the front of the race. Winning stages like Nieve yesterday and, perhaps, Lopez today is a pretty good fall-back for Team Sky, who often get accused at having no Plan B at Grand Tours. Sure, it was a blow that Mikel Landa withdrew with illness last week, but it's given opportunities to his fellow Basque riders Nieve and Lopez, that's for sure - two riders who would otherwise be burying themselves for their leader. No time gap as yet for Lopez, but he leads the pack by 6:50.


The leaders are not onto the second of six climbs in today's Dolomite bonanza: the Cat.2 Passo Sella (5.5km at 8%). It has a maximum gradient of 12% right in the middle.


Today's route - which mirrors much of the popular Maratona gran fondo - is extraordinarily beautiful, there's no denying it.


Movistar's Rory Sutherland leads the main pack over the summit of the Passo Pordoi just over seven minutes down on the leaders. They all tuck into an energy gel and put on a gilet - it's going to be a long and chilly descent.


So much cycling history on these climbs...


And David Lopez has edged clear of his fellow escapees on this winding descent. Race radio said the Sky riders in this break were Knees and Roche, but that's clearly not the case. No sign of either of those two, but Lopez is very much to the fore. Could he repeat team-mate and compatriot Mikel Nieve's feats today?


The Sky rider in this break is not Christian Knees but David Lopez - and it's the Spaniard who took third place over the summit. He's riding with Cunego and Denifl on the descent, and the latter two are having a little argument - probably about that sprint for the KOM points.


Denifl attacks again near the summit! The Austrian has Cunego on his wheel - and the Italian veteran manages to pull clear and take the KOM points with apparent ease. The Little Prince is looking rather regal. He consolidates his lead in the blue jersey mountains classification, with Denifl settling for second place. With Visconti not in this break, the Austrian should at least move into second place on the KOM standings today.


First bits of snow sighted on this Giro d'Italia. No surprise - this is a ski resort in the winter and part of the Sella Ronda route. There are still piles of snow beside the road and the colourless grass - yet to go green - shows that the snow only melted here fairly recently. The gap is 6:20 still for the leading group, which has shed a few riders following the tempo increase by Denifl.


ATTACK: Stefan Denifl accelerates from the break to spark a response by Cunego. The others are struggling to keep up but they just about manage. Those two men are after the blue jersey KOM points atop this first climb of the day. Bongiorno and Preidler are just behind, with Ulissi and Domont and Roche all nearby.


Two more withdrawals to report: Polish veteran Przemyslaw Niemiec (Lampre-Merida) and Mathias Brandle (IAM Cycling) have abandoned, following Arnaud Demare earlier.


Giacomo Berlato paces his Nippo-Vini Fantini team-mate Damiano Cunego on the front of the break. Berlato has been a regular fixture in breaks in this race, right back to his presence in both breaks in the Netherlands at the start of the Giro. Cunego is in the blue jersey - he leads the standings with 85 points, with another Italian, Gio Visconti (Movistar), second with 67 points after finishing second yesterday. Stefan Denifl, the IAM rider also in this break, is third on 54 points after taking the first two KOMs yesterday before sitting up in the break.


The virtual standings have Ulissi and Siutsou above Amador now in the fight for pink, but it's all a bit trivial because this break won't stay out with this margin right to the end.


The leaders are onto the first of six climbs today, the Cat.1 Passo Pordoi (9.3km at 6.9%). It's a wide road through the ski resort of Arabba so very different from yesterday's climbs. The gap is 6:15 for the large 37-man break.


Movistar are setting the tempo on the front of the pack with five riders ahead of Amador, the maglia rosa. We then have Nibali's Astana army just ahead of the fluorescent glow of Rafal Majka's Tinkokk team.


The Passo Pordoi will start properly at the ski resort of Arabba. But it's still been a tough uphill grint to get here. The gap is pushing five minutes now. We spoke to Vincenzo Nibali this morning: "Today's a very difficult day in the Dolomites - all the climbs are extremely hard. It will be interesting to see how we manage the race. Scarponi is brilliant, Fuglsang's going well too and has been very active. Today is possible to see two races in one - for the break and the classification."


The gap for this 37-man break is 4:18 so they're going strong - but we've yet to hit the first big climb, the Passo Pordoi.


It's fair to say that the scenery today is pretty spectacular...


Some intersting names in the break. Zeits is there for Nibali later on; Bardiani have three riders; Moser is there again for Cannondale, while Lampre also have four riders, including Ulissi - the best placed on GC at 5:18. Denifl is there again after his cameo on the front yesterday; Movistar have two riders again, including Betancur. Cunego is hunting down blue jersey KOM points; Roche is Sky's man for the stage win after yesterday's success, while Plaza has mountain pedigree for Orica-GreenEdge.


French sprinter Arnaud Demare (FDJ) has withdrawn from the race. Demare was second in the red jersey standings behind Giacomo Nizzolo.


More than 30 riders in this break. Their names here, from Cyclingpro.net: Axel Domont, Hugo Houle (Ag2R-La Mondiale), Andrey Zeits (Astana), Nicola Boem, Francesco Manuel Bongiorno, Sonny Colbrelli (Bardiani-CSF), Darwin Atapuma (BMC), Moreno Moser, Nathan Brown (Cannondale), Kanstantsin Siutsou (Dimension Data), David De La Cruz, Matteo Trentin (Etixx-QuickStep), Sergey Firsanov (Gazprom-RusVelo), Stefan Denifl (IAM Cycling), Diego Ulissi, Valerio Conti, Sacha Modolo, Manuele Mori (Lampre-Merida), Tim Wellens, Pim Ligthart, Maxime Monfort (Lotto Soudal), Carlos Betancur, José Herrada (Movistar), Damiano Cunego, Giacomo Berlato (NIPPO-Vini Fantini), Ruben Plaza (Orica GreenEDGE), Georg Preidler (Giant-Alpecin), Egor Silin, Rein Taaramae (Katusha), Twan Castelijns, Primoz Roglic (Lotto NL-Jumbo), Christian Knees, Nicolas Roche (Sky), Laurent Didier (Trek-Segafredo), Matteo Busato, Daniel Martinez (Wilier-Southeast).


The first split in the pack occurred after a tough opening hour of racing during which the riders covered 48.5 kilometres - impressive given the steady uphill rise towards the first climb, the Pordoi.


Still no attacks after 20km with the Astana team of Vincenzo Nibali controlling the pace.


The sun's out for this decisive day in the Dolomites. No attacks came in the first 10km - hardly surprising given what's up ahead...


And here's the riders as they set off from Alpago to get this stage started...


Here's a photo of the new pink jersey - the first man from Costa Rica to ever lead a Grand Tour, Andrey Amador.


174 riders took to the start ahead of today's monster of a stage - but we can expect much less to reach the finish. That's the kind of profile we have on the menu.


In the fight for pink, Luxembourg's Bob Jungels (Etixx-QuickStep) lost the race lead after being dropped by the race favourites on the 16% maximum gradient of the tough final climb. Amador, the only Central American on cycling's WorldTour, finished with the race favourites 1:17 down on Nieve and made history when Jungels came home 50 seconds adrift. Amador, 29, now leads Jungels by 26 seconds on GC with Italy's Vincenzo Nibali (Astana) rising to third after the Italian pipped rival Alejandro Valverde (Movistar) for third place on the stage to snare four valuable bonus seconds.


Yesterday, Andrey Amador made history as the first Costa Rican to lead a Grand Tour as Spaniard Mikel Nieve saved Team Sky's Giro d'Italia with a fine solo win in Cividale del Friuli. Nieve, Sky's veteran Basque climber, broke clear of a large leading group on the second of four categorised climbs in the frantic 170-kilometre stage 13 in Friuli, the semi-autonomous region of north-east Italy near the Slovenian border, to secure his second career stage win on the Giro after holding off a chasing Giovanni Visconti (Movistar).


Hello and welcome to live coverage of stage 14 of the Giro d'Italia - and it's a big one: the race hits the fabled Dolomites with a 210km ride from Alpago to Corvara that features a succession of six peaks, five of which rise to over 2,000 metres. Included amongst those climbs are the mythical Passo Pordoi and Passo Giau.