11 May 2013

Giro d'Italia Stage 8 Gabicce Mare - Saltara

Today's stage is the individual time trial over 56.4km. Before yesterday it was probably the stage that Olympic Time Trial Champion Sir Bradley Wiggins thought he would be able to do enough to overcome the 17 seconds he lost to his GC contenders the other day into Matera due to the time splits, in the wet. As I said that was before yesterday.

Yesterday I did mention the weather forecast said there might be rain, and rain there was. Coming down the last descent. Adam Hansen and Aussie on the Lotto-Belisol team became the first member of a long break away to stay away and win a stage in this years race. Although that was not for lack of trying from behind. Vincenzo Nibali (AST) tried to make the most of his famous descending ability in the wet, but he overcooked it into a corner and came down. By the time he had recovered his bike he was in a group with more of the GC contenders. But nervously at the back of the group was Wiggins. At one point on the coverage it looked like a Sky rider, suspiciously like Wiggins was back in the cars after someone else was reported to have gone down. The later there was a Wiggins crash captured on camera. He didn't get back into his riding quickly and the gap went up. But his team mate Rigoberto Uran and Sergio Henao canme back to pace him to the finish. But in the end he lost 1'23" to Nibali, Cadel Evans (BMC), Michele Scarponi (LAM) and Ryder Hesjedal (GRM).

Today is a long individual time trial, one that normally would suit Wiggins. But what has the effect of the last few days and especially yesterday had on him.

Yesterday Dave Braislford said that he was not injured yet he didn't look his usual easy self even when the road stopped going downhill in the wet. If he isn't in the right frame of mind today he may end up not eating into the time of those other GC contenders anywhere near enough if he is to be a serious challenger in this Giro later on.

If he is he could take a minute at least out of anyone, there is no Tony Martin or Chris Froome here who in recent TTs have been the only people to really stay within that of him over this sort of distance. If that Wiggins that was dominant last summer turns up today he could very well turnaround yesterday and climb into the Maglia Rosa, or at least get very close to it.

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