Tag Archives: Bob Jungels

Ulissi wins again but Jungels remins king of the Giro

So much for that being a sprinters day on what looked on the profile like a pan-flat stage with a couple of little bumps near the end. Turns out those hilly were harder than they looked and enough to shake virtually everyone not in GC contention from the final shootout for the stage win.

Vincenzo Nibali turned up the pressure on the descent of one of those hills and split it up nicely. For a moment it looked like himself, Alejandro Valverde and Esteban Chaves might take time on everyone else with 15km to go, but the leading duo on GC — Bob Jungels and Andrey Amador — soon bridged across…and then attacked. It was an attempt by Amador to take the jersey from Jungels, but the young Etixx – Quick Step rider had more in his legs than they thought and it was soon about the two putting time into the rest with Jungels looking the strongest of the two. With 4.5km remaining Diego Ulissi, he of one stage win to his name in his Giro being quickly dominated by Italian stage winners, sprinted across the small but holding gap to join the attack and set up the potential three man sprint and with the Italian then present it should have been obvious who would win the stage.

The gap held and Ulissi took the win, sprinting around Jungels who was more focused on keeping the chasing group at bay with a huge effort in the final kilometre that resulted in him finishing third of the three. The result gave the Luxembourgian four bonus seconds, though his lead of the Giro was reduced by 2sec with Amador finishing in front of him and gaining 6sec overall. Still the limited bunch that contained the other GC contenders trailed in behind Giacomo Nizzolo at 13sec thus improving Jungels advantage over the likes of Nibali and Valverde by 17sec.

Ulissi will no doubt steal the local headlines for his superbly timed effort, but Jungels is the story now. What is the limits to this 23 year olds potential? In many ways he is replacing the feel good, likeable, newcomer-on-the-GC-contention block, Tom Dumoulin (who incidentally abandoned the Giro this morning) by putting in the kind of performance we seen from the Dutchman at last years Vuelta.

This Giro is only Jungels third Grand Tour, the first of which (the 2014 Vuelta) he abandoned, but he did finish 27th overall at the 2015 Tour de France (including three top 10 stage finishes in the mountains) so the potential is there. He was 3rd at Tirreno-Adriatico this year (albeit a race in which the queen stage was culled due to weather) and 9th at the 2014 Critérium International, but this Giro is very much proving to be his breakout party, and how enjoyable it is to watch.

Of course, the high mountains have all still to come so a lot can and probably will change, but a lot of people will now be rooting for the rider from an Etixx team who surely never imagined they’d be fighting the GC battle this far into the race.

Long may it continue.

Notes: Tom Dumoulin abandoned the Giro this morning citing saddle sores, making it two days in-a-row that a pre-race contender has dropped out following the withdrawal of Mikel Landa through illness. The Sky rider has since said he would be willing to turn his attention to aiding Chris Froome at the Tour in July.

2016 Giro d’Italia, stage 11 result:

1. Diego Ulissi (Lampre)

2. Andrey Amador (Movistar)

3. Bob Jungels (Etixx – Quick Step)

4. Giancomo Nizzolo (Trek-Segafredo)

5. Sonny Colbrelli (Bardiani CSF)

6. Matteo Trentin (Etixx – Quick Step)

in 4h 56′ 32″

all s.t.

@ 13″

all s.t.

General classification after stage 11:

1. Bob Jungels (Etixx – Quick Step)

2. Andrey Amador (Movistar)

3. Alejandro Valverde (Movistar)

4. Steven Kruijswijk (LottoNL-Jumbo)

5. Vincenzo Nibali (Astana)

6. Rafal Majka (Tinkoff)

in 45h 16′ 20″

@ 24″

@ 1′ 07″

s.t.

@ 1′ 09″

@ 2′ 01″

Elsewhere, in California, Julian Alaphilippe won the queen stage over the climb of Gibraltar Road and moved into the race leaders yellow jersey ahead of Peter Stetina, who also finished second on the stage, by 19sec. Alaphilippe won the queen stage of the Tour of California last year too but had Peter Sagan to contend with in the GC battle, a battle he lost to the Slovak on the final day when Sagan over turned a 2sec defecit. This year Alaphilippe won’t have Sagan to worry about as the world champion trailed home 21min 52sec down and well out of contention to retain his title.

Tour of California GC after 3 stages:

1. Julian Alaphilippe (Etixx – Quick Step)
2. Peter Stetina (Trek-Segafredo)
3. George Bennett (LottoNL-Jumbo)
in 12h 49′ 47″
@ 19″
@ 31″
Advertisements

Youth springs forth with stage win and race leadership change on stage 10

It was a good day for youth on day that seen another Italian winner, a change in the race lead, a conflict between team-mates, Tom Dumoulin losing time, and the abandonment of Mikel Landa after falling ill over night. The stage winner was 21 year old Giulio Ciccone, who became the third different Italian stage winner at this Giro and the race leader is now 23 year old Bob Jungles, who became the first rider from Luxembourg to pull on the pink jersey since the great Charly Gaul in 1959.

It’s been a mighty impressive Giro for the Italians. On top of having Gianluca Brambilla in pink for a few days, they now have three stage wins from three different riders, and none of them have been sucked up via bunch sprints either. Indeed, if you remove the sprint stages and the two individual time-trials from the equation, Italians have now won three of the four remaining stages thus far.

And it was fitting that it should be this way for I had to stream the final 15-20km in Italian. I had no idea what they were saying other than the mention of riders names, but there was little doubt that they were enjoying what they were seeing. No let up in the shouting and yelling that gave the impression that I was watching the most dramatic race of all time.

Jungles will also be thanking the Italians as it was his Italian team-mate, Brambilla, in the pink jersey, who sacrificed so much for him to take the race lead. Brambilla had been dropped on the penultimate climb but regained contact with the reduced peloton on the descent before chasing hard for Jungles to reduce the gap to the attacking Andrey Amador, before blowing up and saying goodbye to the race lead.

Amador will be disappointed in some ways, though he remains a serious contender regardless. He looked to have sprung away from the favourites only for the remaining GC contenders to steam around the final corner, led by none other than Amador’s gut-busting team-mate, Alejandro Valverde, as the Costa Rican’s hit the line and gained just a single second. Whether it cost Amador a shot at pink is hard to say, he was still 26sec shy of overhauling Jungles after all, but it would still be interesting to be a fly on the wall of the Movistar team-bus after the race finished.

Beyond Valverde, names like Esteban Chaves, Jakob Fuglsang, Steven Kruijswijk, Rafal Majka, Ilnur Zakarin and, of course, Vincenzo Nibali were all present and accounted for. Tom Dumoulin lost time, as expected, and will now focus on individual stage glory while Ryder Hesjedal might now want to think of the same as he too lost contact on the penultimate climb. With regards to the overall, things remain tight. Jungles leads Amador by 26sec and Valverde and Kruijswijk by 50sec but Nibali is only two seconds further adrift.

And it’s those later three names, separated by those short two seconds, that I feel will contend for the podium of this Giro in the long run; Nibali and Valverde look strong and Kruijswijk impresses me more by the day. Then again, last week I thought Landa would be on the podium, Dumoulin would be a top five contender along with Hesjedal, I had never heard of Giulio Ciccone and had no idea Bob Jungles had this kind of riding in him.

2016 Giro d’Italia, stage 10 result:

1. Giulio Ciccone (Bardiani CSF)

2. Ivan Rovny (Tinkoff)

3. Darwin Atapuma (BMC)

4. Nathan Brown (Cannondale)

5. Damiano Cunego (Nippo – Vini Fantini)

6. Andrey Amador (Movistar)

in 5h 44′ 32″

@ 42″

@ 1′ 20″

@ 1′ 53″

@ 2′ 04″

@ 2′ 10″

General classification after stage 10:

1. Bob Jungles (Etixx – Quick Step)

2. Andrey Amador (Movistar)

3. Alejandro Valverde (Movistar)

4. Steven Kruijswijk (LottoNL-Jumbo)

5. Vincenzo Nibali (Astana)

6. Gianluca Brambilla (Etixx – Quick Step)

in 40h 19′ 52″

@ 26″

@ 50″

s.t.

@ 52″

@ 1′ 11″