Sagan Claims the Ciclamino Jersey
While it started with a climb, stage 10 of the Giro d’Italia was predicted to end with a bunch sprint. The 139km Parcours – the shortest road stage of the race – had only one categorized climb to contend with, a fourth category ascent cresting a little less than 40km from the finish in Foligno, which would be no trouble for a sprinter with their eye on the prize.
With less road on which to make an impact, the break went out as soon as they could, a group of five heading away from the start, and soon building up a lead of two minutes. As soon as BORA-hansgrohe took to the front, however, this lead fell dramatically, the German team setting an incredibly hard pace on the day’s categorized climb to make it hard for Peter Sagan’s sprint rivals, before setting about catching the break. Just as the escape was swept up with 43km left, it was clear the peloton was suffering, with riders falling off the back, and with a long and straight route to the finish line, it was a matter of maintaining this pace to the line. Emanuel Buchmann, Giovanni Aleotti and Daniel Oss continued to push the pace on the front after Cesare Benedetti, Felix Grossschartner and Matteo Fabbro had worked hard on the climb.
Photos © BORA – hansgrohe / Bettiniphoto & VeloImages
While other teams and their riders made attempts to latch back on, the speeds were just too high, and as the race entered its final 5km, BORA-hansgrohe was still on the front, Maciej Bodnar maintaining that blistering pace with his time trial skills. The city streets in Foligno made the finish tense, and a crash in the last kilometer saw a split in the bunch, but Peter was safe and was preparing for the finish line. Into the final corner and Peter kicked hard, his rivals totally unprepared and unable to go with him, and the Slovak rider held that lead to the line, taking his first win of the 2021 Giro d’Italia and charging into the race’s ciclamino jersey.