218 kilometers from Indicatore (Arezzo) to Castelraimondo were on the agenda of the day. The course had some difficult offerings in the shape of the Poggio San Romualdo, 10.8 kilometers long with an average gradient of 6.4 %, and a difficult final circuit course. Wout Poels (Sky) made the most out of it and took the win solo. Team MTN-Qhubeka p/b Samsung showed strength and helped Steve Cummings moving up in the overall.
Luke Durbridge and Matt Hayman (Orica-GreenEdge) were the attackers of the day, going clear just a few kilometers into the race. The two Australians built up a lead of over 6 minutes, which moved Durbridge into the virtual leader’s jersey. Both faded though, once the race reached its conclusion.
BMC tried to control the peloton for overnight race leader Greg Van Avermaet. With 20 kilometers to go Michele Scarponi (Astana) attacked the peloton and dragged Giovanni Visconti (Movistar) and Julian Arredondo (Trek) with him. The trio was able to open a gap of 10 seconds but couldn’t hold on to it.
On the final climb of the day, the Crispiero, the GC contenders put their cards on the table and tried to make the average gradient of 9.3 % work for themselves. Gianpaolo Caruso (Katusha) opened the fight, but was quickly overtaken by Poels, who went solo on the final 5 kilometers to take the win. Rigoberto Uran (Etixx-QuickStep) outsprinted Joaquim Rodriguez (Katusha) to take second place.
The final proved to be a tough one for MTN-Qhubeka p/b Samsung. The teams best placed finisher was Steve Cummings, who crossed the line some 20 seconds behind the lone winner. Edvald Boasson Hagen and Louis Meintjes followed with around 40 seconds.
In the overall Steve sits now in third position, 26 seconds behind the new race leader Wout Poels.
Jens Zemke – Sports Director
It’s a new experience for us to have a rider sitting third in the overall of a WorldTour event after four days. The team did well today to keep Steve up there and we hope he can stay there tomorrow. All in all it was a good day for us, not just here in Italy but also in Malaysia where Youcef Reguigui won the queen stage and took over the overall. It feels good to see the team performing so well.