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Giro d'Italia | Stage 12

05:39:21

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Here's the moment Oldani took his first pro win

And it was two-in-two for Italy as Alpecin-Fenix used their power in numbers to take their second stage of the Giro through Stefano Oldani.
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YESTERDAY AT 11:51

Oldani wins Stage 12 to become ‘household name’

Van der Poel and Reisebeek all smiles

Oldani's teammates - who were both in the break - look very happy with their day's work as they cross the line with a couple of other remnants from the break around 7:45 down. They're shortly followed by the Trek-led peloton who bring their maglia rosa Juanpe Lopez home 9:07 in arrears.

Bauke Mollema leads chasers home

It's the Dutch veteran who wins the sprint for fourth as the quartet cross the line 57 seconds down on Oldani. Now the long wait to find out how much time both Wilco Kelderman and Lucas Hamilton have won back on the GC favourites.

Victory for Stefano Oldani!

The Trio comes back together ahead of the slight ramped finish before they come to a near standstill. It's Leemreize who leads it out from the back but Oldani has too much as he powers past the rangy Dutchman and then holds off compatriot Lorenzo Rota, who perhaps delayed his sprint a touch too long.
So, it's the first pro win of Oldani's career and a second his Alpecin-Fenix team and a second on the bounce for the host nation following Alberto Dainese yesterday.

15:31 - Final kilometre

Leemreize goes early after drifting to the back on the corner ahead of the final kilometre...

15:30 - 'They all deserve to win it'

2.5km to go: Don't they just, Sean. It's a slight uphill finish in Genova which may play into the hands of Leemreize but who knows. The peloton is still 8:45 down.

15:26 - Head says Oldani, heart says Rota

5km to go: Stefano Oldani is surely the fastest finisher of this trio but anyone who saw Lorenzo Rota's shift for Biniam Girmay the other day will be holding out for him. But where does that leave the young Dutchman Leemreize, who's riding his debut Grand Tour at the age of 22 years.
All three of their teams have already won stages in this year's Giro and so they'll be licking their chops at the prospect of another victory. Behind, the quartet know they have missed out, but Kelderman is still pressing to ensure he makes the maximum possible inroads in the general classification.

15:20 - 'They've got it in the bag now'

10km to go: Sean Kelly doesn't believe that the four chasers can catch the leaders now - unless that trio starts playing around near the finish. The gap is down to 45 seconds and so it's not a done deal - especially with those tired legs at the end of the longest stage of this race.
They have just passed over the new San Goirgio bridge, which was built following the disaster which saw the old Ponte Morandi collapse in a rainstorm in August 2018.

15:12 - Trio extends the lead

15km to go: It looks increasingly like today's winner will be someone who has never won a professional race before. Rota, who was so integral in paving the way to his teammate Biniam Girmay's victory the other day, will take on Oldani and Leemreize for the win. They have almost a minute now over the more experienced chase quartet of Mollema, Kelderman, Buitrago and Hamilton. We're not sure what's happening behind with the other escapees but the peloton is now 8:15 in arrears.
Here'a a photo of the leading trio from the previous climb...

Stefano Oldani of Italy and Team Alpecin - Fenix, Gijs Leemreize of Netherlands and Team Jumbo - Visma and Lorenzo Rota of Italy and Team Intermarché - Wanty - Gobert Matériaux compete in the breakaway during the 105th Giro d'Italia 2022, Stage 12

Image credit: Getty Images

15:03 - Leaders maintaining their advantage

22km to go: The chasing quartet have not made any inroads on the trio ahead with the gap still 38 seconds after the descent. None of the three leaders - Oldani, Leemreize and Rota - have ever won a WorldTour event before. In fact, none of them have ever won any pro race of any description and so that may change very soon.

14:55 - Trio go over the top, Mollema leads chase

31km to go: Rota crests the summit ahead of Oldani and Leemreize as the trio start this long 10km descent ahead of the final run into Genova. It's Mollema who led a quartet over the top 38 seconds down ahead of Kelderman, Lucas Hamilton and Buitrago. One of these seven riders will probably win today because the other escapees are all over the road and coming over in dribs and drabs. Whatever happens today, Kelderman is going to soar back up the standings because the pack is now over seven minutes down.

14:50 - Van der Poel has popped, breakaway explodes

32km to go: Perhaps this is why Alpecin-Fenix sent those riders ahead - Van der Poel, their ace, is off the back and pedalling squares, so it's all about Oldani now in that leading trio. They still have 50 seconds over the chasers, which are being driven by Hamilton, Kelderman, Mollema and Buitrago. The peloton is 6:30 back now so it could be a very good day for Kelderman.

14:45 - Final climb of the day

34km to go: They're on the Cat.3 Valico di Trensasco (4.3km at 8%). This climb peaks at 12% at the midway point and it will surely be the springboard for today's winner. Ballerini has cracked while Reisebeek founf himself in the wrong gear and lost all his early momentum as Santiago Buitrago skipped clear in pursuit of the leading trio.

14:42 - Alpecin-Fenix just can't help themselves

35km to go: They have Oldani in the leading trio but also Reisebeek who has now ridden clear of the break in pursuit of Ballerini, with Schwartzmann eager to join too. I guess it's all part of the tactics to pave the way for Van der Poel - who knows? They're approaching the next climb.

14:39 - Ballerini the lone chaser

40km to go: That chasing duo was swept up before Ballerini put in another surge to go clear in pursuit of the leaders. The trio now has 40 seconds over the break, which is starting to break down. Cort has to close down a dig from Van der Poel after the descent and they're all looking at each other with suspicion.

14:30 - Van der Poel and Ballerini lead the chase

50km to go: Hello! Now this is tasty... the Dutchman and the Italian have ridden clear of the break in pursuit of the three leaders - and that swings the pendulum in favour of Alpecin-Fenix again, what with Oldani also out ahead.

14:25 - Rota takes 9pts over the top

53km to go: Rota tolls over the summit of La Colleta to pocket the KOM points ahead of a chasing duo of Stefano Oldani and Gijs Leemreize. The trio come together in the tunnel just after the summit before they start the descent. They have 25 seconds over the rest of the breakaway. The peloton, with Trek and UAE on the nose, are riding at 5:22.

14:20 - Intermarche make the first move

56km to go: It's Lorenzo Rota who rolls the dice and sparks the first shake-out in the break. The Italian is followed by four riders - including Vendrame and Reisebeek - while the rest of the break has stretched out accordingly behind, with some of them being tailed off. Rota, a 26-year-old from Bergamo, has never won a professional bike race although you sense that this acceleration is to pave the way for his teammate Rein Taaramae.

14:09 - Second climb of the day

61km to go: The break are onto La Colletta, which is 9km long at 4.4%. Their lead is still 4:55 and things are coming to the boil nicely. The fireworks may not come on this climb but they'll certainly arrive on the descent and on the final climb ahead of the fast run into Genova.

13:56 - Oldani 'wins' intermediate sprint

68km to go: At the second intermediate sprint at Ferrada it's Stefano Oldani who rolls through to take the spoils on the head of the break. The Italian is one of three Alpecin-Fenix riders in this move which bodes well for Mathieu van der Poel, who will have two domestiques to help cover the moves on these coming climbs. It looks like Santiago Buitrago saw someone he recognised in the crowd because the Colombian from Bahrain Victorious stuck out a hand and waved at a figure as he passed. The gap is still around five minutes for these 24 leaders.

13:42 - Mollema and Cort eyeing the grand slam

77km to go: Both Bauke Mollema and Magnus Cort need a stage win on the Giro to go with their previous wins in the Tour and Vuelta. Romain Bardet and Lilian Calmejane are in the same boat although the Frenchman are not present in this move. The gap is back up to 5:07 for the 24 leaders as they continue up the valley road towards the second sprint at Ferrada ahead of the next climb.

13:27 - Thankfully no incident on descent of the Passo del Bocco

90km to go: It seems that both the breakaway and the peloton rode that descent - where Wouter Weylandt lost his life 11 years ago - without pushing things too much out of respect for the fallen Belgian rider. The 24 leaders still have an advantage of 4:30 over the pack.

13:14 - Mosca leads peloton over climb, Sutterlin caught

102km to go: It's Trek-Segafredo on the front of both the break and the pack as Jacopo Mosca leads the peloton over the Passo del Bocco 4:43 behind the 24 leaders, who appear to have jettisoned Jasha Sutterlin. The German Bahrain Victorious rider was in the move but has been caught on the descent after apparently sitting up.

13:10 - Mollema takes 9pts over the summit

106km to go: It's the Dutchman who skips clear to lead the breakaway over the top of the Passo del Bocco to pocket 9pts in the KOM standings. That puts Mollema onto 29pts which is provisional fifth place but still somewhere short of Diego Rosa's leading tally of 83pts.

13:00 - Five minutes for break on Passo del Bocco

111km to go: The 25 leaders - for, yes, those chasers have managed to make the connection - are onto the Cat.3 Passo del Bocco, wjhich is 6km long at 4%. Their advantage is up to 5:15 and it's Trek-Segafredo who are setting the tempo on the front of the peloton behind. They may have Mollema in the move, but they also have the pink jersey of Juanpe Lopez to consider.
Here was the moment, 11 years ago, when the aforementioned Weylandt's Leopard Trek teammanes crossed the finish of the subsequent stage to Livorno in a long line to commemorate the Belgian. Weylandt's close friend Tyler Farrar, of Garmin-Cervelo, was also there in the line.

Remembering Wouter Weylandt on the Passo del Bocco

Today's first climb will be a poignant one: it was on its descent where, 11 years ago, the Belgian rider Wouter Weylandt passed away after a crash during stage 3. It's the first time the Giro has been back to the Passo del Bocco since the tragedy and there are a handful of riders in the pack who were racing that day, including Vincenzo Nibali, Mark Cavendish, Dario Cataldo, Richie Porte and Josh Van Emden, as well as Eurosport/GCN pundit Robbie McEwen. There's a memorial to Weylandt beside the stretch of road where he had his fatal accident. No one has worn Weylandt's 108 bib since that terrible day in respect to the fallen rider.

12:51 - Almost four minutes as chasers close in

116km to go: The break is very much climbing although we're still 5km away from the official start of the Passo del Bocco, the first of three third-category climbs on today's menu. The 22 leaders may soon become 25 with that Italian trio now just 25 seconds behind.

12:44 - Van der Poel and Cort among the favourites

123km to go: It's a tough one to call now that the breakaway has been allowed to go. Should they come to the finish as one then there are no shortage of fast finishers in Mathieu van der Poel, Simone Consonni, Magnus Cort and Vincenzo Albanese. But with three climbs between now and then, we could see one of the climbing specialists make a move early - the likes of Bauke Mollema, Lucas Hamilton, Rein Taaramae, Valerio Conti and Wilco Kelderman. Then you have someone like Andrea Vendrame who straddles both camps. Take your pick.
Earlier, Bradley Wiggins noticed the pink jersey Juanpe Lopez apparently struggling near the back of the peloton. This was his report from the back of a moto on the course...

‘Not a great sign’ – Wiggins concerned as Lopez sits back

12:36 - Gap grows to two minutes

127km to go: The Italian wildcard teams missed this move which explains why we have a trio of Luca Covili and Davide Gabburo (Bardiani-CSF-Faizane), and Edoardo Zardini (Drone Hopper-Androni Giacattoli) trying to bridge over. They're 50 seconds down on the leaders, who have 2:10 over the peloton.
The best placed rider on GC in this move is the Dutchman Kelderman, who shipped a load of time owing to a mechanical (he blamed his disc brakes) on the stage to Blockhaus. Kelderman is 11:02 down in the standings and will hope to win some of that back today in Genova.

12:28 - Chasing duo caught, 22 riders clear

132km to go: De Bondt and De Marchi couldn't bridge over to this breakaway of 22 riders. Right, here's who is in the move: Andrea Vendrama (Ag2R-Citroen), Mathieu van der poel, Stefano Oldani and Oscar Riesebeek (all Alpecin-Fenix), Valerio Conti (Astana-Qazaqstan), Santiago Buitrago and Jasha Sutterlin (Bahrain Victorious), Wilco Kelderman (Bora-Hansgrohe), Simone Consonni (Cofidis), Magnus Cort (EF Education-EasyPost), Vincenzo Albanese (Eolo-Kometa), Lorenzo Rota and Rein Taaramae (Intermarche-Wanty-Gobert), Pascal Eenkhoorn and Gijs Leemreize (Jumbo-Visma), Will Barta (Movistar), Davide Ballerini (Quick-Step Alpha Vinyl), Lucas Hamilton and Matteo Sobrero (BikeExchange-Jayco), Nico Denz (Team DSM) and Bauke Mollema (Trek-Segafredo).

12:19 - Carapaz caught, duo chase leaders

139km to go: It looks like this is the day's break - with just the potential addition of two more riders as Dries De Bondt and Alessandro De Marchi skip clear of the pack, which has eased up considerably, and are doing their best to join the party. We'll bring you all the names as soon as we have them. But Van der Poel, Mollema, Ballerini, Kelderman and Cort are all there.

12:13 - Splits in the pack, Carapaz tries his luck

144km to go: This could be the moment... There's a big group that has formed and it includes the likes of Magnus Cort, Wilco Kelderman, Rein Taaramae, Andrea Vendrame and Bauke Mollema as well as Van der Poel. Around 20 riders.
And there's a small group trying to bridge over - and look who's there: Richard Carapaz! The 2019 winner has compatriot Jonathan Narvaez with him as they try to join the leaders - and that, quite understandably, has provoked a response from the peloton. The Ecuadorian, after all, is only 12 seconds down on GC and in second place.

12:09 - Alpecin-Fenix attack right after sprint

147km to go: Demare picks up 12pts uncontested after accelerating off the front. Fernando Gaviria, who is third in the points classification, takes second place moments before Dries De Bondt looks to exploit the post-sprint vaccuum by bringing teammate Mathieu van der Poel onto the front and drilling out a hefty tempo. Could this be the move?

12:07 - Demare primed for intermediate sprint

149km to go: The average speed so far today has been a zippy 54.7km/h as Groupama-FDJ come to the front to lead out their sprinter for more maglia ciclamino points. Another dangerous-looking move came to nothing a few kilometres ago before we even got the chance to register who was in it. Story of the stage so far.

11:56 - Big group forms including Arnaud Demare

158km to go: The reason the Frenchman is involved probably comes down to the intermediate sprint which is coming up in under 20km. In any case, it's a stellar selection of riders who have gone clear - including the likes of Mathieu van der Poel and Magnus Cort, two riders who you'd line up as favourites for today. The gap isn't big though and it's not likely this maglia ciclamino group will stay out ahead for much longer.
It's one of those crazy stages where you go away for five minutes and the whole complexion has changed when you come back. We're still to have the day's break after 45-odd kilometres of frantic racing in the opening hour - and it's not likely to go now until after the sprint and on the first climb of the day.

11:50 - Pink jersey on a bad day?

164km to go: The Spanish race leader Juan Pedro Lopez seems to be struggling. He's been near the back for quite some time and doesn't have any Trek-Segafredo teammates with him, opening himself up for danger if any splits form. He's a slight chap, the 24-year-old, and this hefty pace won't suit him.
It could be worse - he could be Lennard Kamna, who has just stopped after picking up a puncture. The German will have a very long and tricky chase now to get back on to a race where he was one of the early animators.

11:45 - Another three-man move goes

166km to go: David de la Cruz (Astana), Jorge Arcas (Movistar) and Lawson Craddock (BineExchange-Jayco) have a small gap on the front but the pace is high and they will either be caught or joined by many others. Just relentless today...

Meanwhile, a certain former Tour winner is back on his motorbike

Here it is, the moment you've been waiting for, the first Brad on a Bike segment from Grand Tour season this year. Wiggo was doing his thing earlier on in this stage before these attacks came thick and fast...

'There's Ray Winstone there!' - Brad on a Bike is back!

11:38 - Alpecin-Fenix top and tailing the peloton

175km to go: With Stefano Oldani trying his luck off the front, his teammate Oscar Rieseneek has been shelled out the back. The Dutchman looks to be really struggling on this false flat which is proving to be a real leg-sapper when ridden at such crazy speeds.
It's still all together after 30km with that four-man move snuffed out. Alessandro De Marchi (Israel-Premier Tech) jumped onto Oldani's wheel and the two had a small gap but were quickly reeled in.

11:29 - Four go clear after period of intensity on the front

181km to go: The attacks went one after the other with Tobias Foss, the Norwegian champion from Jumbo-Visma, and Davide Ballerini of Quick-Step very much in the mix, ditto Alpecin-Fenix, BikeExchange and Bora-Hansgrohe through Lennard Kamna, who may be eyeing a return to the blue jersey today.
We now have four clear though after Oier Lazkano (Movistar) and Matteo Sobrero (BikeExchange-Jayco) bridged over to Pascal Eenkhoorn (Jumbo-Visma) and Pieter Serry ((Quick-Step Alpha Vinyl). They open up a 15-second gap on this wide stretch of road alongside the train tracks and the river Taro. But there's much movement behind from riders and teams who want a splice of the pie.

11:20 - VdP group reeled in, another one goes

190km to go: The Van der Poel quintet fizzled out after BikeExchange-Jayco led the chase from behind. Italy's Eduardo Affini (JumboVisma) then acceerated amd took two riders with him, including Michael Schwarzmann (Lotto Soudal). It's no surprise seeing Lotto Soudal riders trying their luck today following Ewan's withdrawal this morning. A very fast start to today's stage where getting in the right break will be so key for anyone with ambitions of winning in Genova.

11:12 - Van der Poel on the move

196km to go: The Dutchman has got into an early five-man move alongside Alpecin-Fenix teammate Stefano Oldani, Italians Luca Rastelli (Bardiani-CSF-Faizane) and Alessandro Covi (UAE Team Emirates), and the Briton Matthew Holmes (Lotto-Soudal). They're going hell for leather as numerous riders try to bridge over. The gap is small - but there's a lot of class in this move.

11:06 - Stage 12 under way

204km to go: There's a slight delay while a couple of riders sort out mechanical issues or, in the case of the maglia ciclamino Arnaud Demare, a problem with his bib number. And then they're off! Thomas De Gendt - free from the shackles of (in his own words) babysitting duties with teammate Ewan - is right on the front and monitoring the moves, which include an early dig from Fernando Gaviria.

One withdrawal: Caleb Ewan

It's no huge surprise to learn that the Australian misfiring pocket-rocket sprinter has decided to call it a day. Ewan has had a terrible race since crashing in the opening stage while pursuing Mathieu van der Poel and Biniam Girmay back in Hungary. He made no bones about his intention to leave before the big mountains so that he could prepare for the Tour de France. And although the next two stages could still end up in a sprint, the Lotto Soudal rider's form is such that he's decided to call it a day now. So, we have 164 riders left in the peloton.
The team added: "Following a short period of rest, the sprinter will build up towards his next big goal of the season, the Tour de France, where he will also be targeting victories in the sprint stages."

Riders rollin' through the neutral zone in Parma

Yesterday it was parmesan cheese, today it's Parma ham. Which, if I'm brutally honest, is just making me feel hungry...
Ciao ragazzi! Welcome to live coverage of Stage 12 of the Giro d'Italia as the race returns to the hills with three third-category climbs before a fast finish in Genova. I]At 204km, it's the longest stage of the Giro and one that will suit the breakaway specialists. But while there may be movement in the blue jersey standings today, you can't discount a sprint at the finish. So many different permutations... "It's going to be a cracker today," says Adam Blythe, who has a long-list of 40 names of who he thinks can win...
https://i.eurosport.com/2022/05/18/3374946.jpg

Dainese stuns big names to win Stage 11 sprint

After Domenico Pozzovivo’s successful moonlighting as a leadout man for team-mate Biniam Girmay on Tuesday it was Romain Bardet’s unlikely turn to play a huge role in an unexpected victory for his DSM team-mate Alberto Dainese in Wednesday’s Stage 11 to Reggio Emilia.
Frenchman Bardet piloted Dainese around the final bend ahead of the home straight after Team DSM shook up their tactics at the 11th hour and backed the Italian 24-year-old instead of their regular Dutch fast-man Cees Bol in what could be the last mass bunch sprint of the 105th edition of the race.
Forced to come from deep, Dainese expertly passed the more fancied Mark Cavendish (Quick-Step Alpha Vinyl), Caleb Ewan (Lotto Soudal) and Arnaud Demare (Groupama-FDJ) on the home straight before emerging from the slipstream of compatriot Simone Consonni (Cofidis) and surge past Fernando Gaviria (UAE Team Emirates) to deny the Colombian what looked like a certain win.
‘I can’t believe it happened!’ – Dainese on shock Stage 11 win‘I can’t believe it happened!’ – Dainese on shock Stage 11 win
Read the full report here
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