How exactly did Tao Geoghegan Hart go from support rider for Geraint Thomas to winning the whole Giro d'Italia?
The 25-year-old was outside the top 100 on general classification after the opening time trial of the race and only came into the picture for GC in the last week.
Here is a stage-by-stage breakdown of how the race unfolded for Geoghegan Hart and his Ineos team.
Tao's fairytale: How Geoghegan Hart and Ineos won Giro
Giro d’Italia 2020 – Stage 1
Saturday October 3, Monreale to Palermo (16km, ITT)
Tao's Ineos team-mate and time-trial extraordinaire Filippo Ganna steals the day wiping the floor with everyone else by 22 seconds and Ineos collect pink. Geoghegan Hart finishes 2:04 behind the leader to lie outside the top 100.
Giro d’Italia 2020 – Stage 2
Sunday October 4, Alcimo to Agrigento (150km)
A sprint finish and Diego Ulissi takes the win, Ganna retains pink and Geraint Thomas enjoys a comfortable outing as Ineos team leader, with Geoghegan Hart playing a support role and lying well outside the conversation in the GC.
Giro d’Italia 2020 – Stage 3
Monday October 5, Enna to Etna (150km)
Thomas crashes in the neutralised zone to pick up injuries that will end his Giro. Geoghegan Hart puts in a strong showing on the volcanic climb to emerge as the team’s best hope at 3:12 down on overall leader Joao Almeida, who takes pink off Ganna.
Videos show crash which ended Geraint Thomas's Giro dream
Giro d’Italia 2020 – Stage 4
Tuesday October 6, Catania to Villafranca Tirrena (138km)
Thomas withdraws, Arnaud Demare takes the sprint finish and Geoghegan Hart finishes within the first 82 riders who all take the same time. He still isn’t classified in the GC.
Giro d’Italia 2020 – Stage 5
Wednesday October 7, Mileto to Camigliatello Silano (225km)
Geoghegan Hart makes his way into the GC at 19th with an excellent ride on an aggressive day. Ganna takes another stage win with a superb solo attack.
Giro d’Italia 2020 – Stage 6
Thursday October 8, Castrovillari to Matera (188km)
Demare wins again in a sprint, Geoghegan Hart remains 19th in the GC.
Giro d’Italia 2020 – Stage 7
Friday October 9, Matera to Brindisi (143km)
Another sprint finish, another Demare stage win. Geoghegan Hart still 19th in GC.
Giro d’Italia 2020 – Stage 8
Saturday October 10, Giovinazzo to Vieste (200km)
Alex Dowsett steals the day with a solo attack, Geoghegan Hart still 19th in GC, three minutes and 18 seconds down on the race leader Joao Almeida.
Giro d’Italia 2020 – Stage 9
Sunday October 11, San Salvo to Roccaraso (208km)
Geoghegan Hart finishes sixth, moves to 17th overall at two minutes and 41 seconds down.
Giro d’Italia 2020 – Stage 10
Tuesday October 13, Lanciano to Tortoreto Lido (212km)
Geoghegan Hart finishes 11th in the stage, moves up the GC to 14th but margin of deficit extends by another four seconds to 2:45 as Joao Almeida retains pink for the eighth day.
Giro d’Italia 2020 – Stage 11
Wednesday October 14, Porto Sant’Elpidio to Rimini (182km)
Geoghegan Hart remains 14th overall, Joao Almeida’s pink jersey is going nowhere quickly.
Giro d’Italia 2020 – Stage 12
Thursday October 15, Cesenatico to Cesenatico (204km)
Geoghegan Hart finishes 10th in the stage and moves to 12th in the GC, still 2:45 behind Joao Almeida.
Giro d’Italia 2020 – Stage 13
Friday October 16, Cervia to Monselice (192km)
Geoghegan Hart edges closer to a stage win, finishing fourth. However Almeida’s second place means that gap in GC extends to 2:51.
Giro d’Italia 2020 – Stage 14
Saturday October 17, Conegliano to Valdobbiadene (34.1km ITT)
Ganna wins again in the time trial, but Geoghegan Hart hints at his potential to take time in the final race against the clock with a strong showing. Tao climbs to 11th in the GC, but the gap to Almeida increases out to 3:44.
Giro d’Italia 2020 – Stage 15
Sunday October 18, Rivolto to Piancavallo (185km)
Tao makes his mark and announces himself as a GC contender with a brilliant stage win. The Ineos man surges clear of Sunweb pair Jai Hindley and Wico Kelderman to collect his first Giro d’Italia stage win and takes time back on Almeida. The deficit stands at 2:57 with the final week looming.
Stage 15 highlights as Tao Geoghegan Hart emerges as Giro contender
Giro d’Italia 2020 – Stage 16
Tuesday October 20, Udine to San Daniele del Fruili (229km)
Now fourth in the GC, suddenly the hopes of the overall victory are not far off. However there is little movement on the day as the GC riders come home together.
Giro d’Italia 2020 – Stage 17
Wednesday October 21, Bassano del Grappa to Madonna di Campiglio (203km)
As the race reaches its climax, the battle comes down to Almeida, Kelderman, Hindley and Geoghegan Hart, but it’s still a phoney war with only small changes in GC.
Giro d’Italia 2020 – Stage 18
Thursday October 22, Pinzolo to Lago di Cancano (207km)
The Stelvio rips apart the GC, and Rohan Dennis plays the perfect lead-out man for Geoghagen Hart, who finishes second to Hindley. Almeida’s long reign in the pink jersey comes to an end and Geoghegan Hart is just 15 seconds off race leader Kelderman.
Giro d’Italia 2020 – Stage 19
Friday October 23, Morbegno to Asti (251km, reduced to 133km)
‘We weren’t consulted about Giro strike, our riders were happy to race’ – Bahrain boss Ellingworth
A dramatic rider protest means the lengthy stage is shortened by over 100km. The day was always likely to end in a sprint regardless and there are no significant changes in GC.
Giro d’Italia 2020 – Stage 20
Saturday October 24, Alba to Sestriere (190km)
‘Geoghegan Hart is in pole position to win the Giro!’ – Watch dramatic Stage 20 finale
A shortened stage still delivers the goods. Geoghegan Hart wins his second stage, and he and Hindley go into the final time trial on the same time after dropping Kelderman. The race goes down to the wire.
Giro d’Italia 2020 – Stage 21
Sunday October 25, Cernusco di Naviglio to Milan (15.7km ITT)
Donning the white jersey, Geoghegan Hart wins the Giro d’Italia, and team-mate Filippo Ganna wins his fourth stage. Geoghegan Hart finishes 13th on the day but is 39 seconds quicker than Hindley to take the title.
Giro Stage 21 highlights - Watch Tao Geoghegan Hart make history in Milan