After Sunday's stage some riders, especially Bradley Wiggins, will be glad that today's stage finishes on the summit of Altopiano del Montasio and doesn't include a descent, just in case it rains again. Indeed the man himself has said he "descended lie a bit of a girl" apologises to all my female readers and to the many female road racers who would have descended better than Bradley, but those are his choice of words. However, the rain on Sunday saw Wiggins with most of his team having to chase back over a minute lost of a wet descent once again. Noticeable in their absence in that pursuit were Uran and Henao who are also in the top 10 overall.
The only member of the top ten who didn't finish in the main group behind Maxim Belkov (KAT) was the man with number 1 on his back, Ryder Hesjedal. He lost over a minute despite his Garmin team mates only a few kms before the climb of the Fiesole, where he became detached riding on the front to control the race for him.
Vincenzo Nibali may try once again to distance himself from some of this rivals on the descent of Passo Cason di Lanza but when they all get to the bottom there is still 21.7km of climbing to be done to the finish.
In is that descent that Nibali along with Cadel Evans (BMC) and others will probably want to test Bradley Wiggins. Descending has been the English riders achilles heel thus far on this tour, so with 28km of pretty steep descending through hairpins to negotiate they will be putting the hammer down no doubt, wet or dry, to see just what the Sky leader can do.
At the line I don't expect to see much more than a maximum of twenty riders in a group (even if a little elongated). This climb isn't a total killer, but someone could turn it into one with an attack at the right point. So it may be considerably less than that.