Alexander Foliforov wins Giro d'Italia uphill ITT, Steven Kruijswijk retains Maglia Rosa
The Russian rider Alexander Foliforov (Gazprom - Rusvelo) has won Stage 15 of the 99th Giro d'Italia, a 10.850km mountain ITT from Castelrotto (Kastelruth) to Alpe di Siusi (Seiser Alm). Steven Kruijswijk (Team Lotto NL - Jumbo) finished second by just 16 hundredths of a second, with Alejandro Valverde (Movistar Team) third.
Steven Kruijswijk (Team Lotto NL - Jumbo) remains the race leader overall and keeps the Maglia Rosa.
1 - Alexander Foliforov (Gazprom - Rusvelo) - 10.850 km in 28'39", ave. 22.617 km/h
2 - Steven Kruijswijk (Team Lotto NL - Jumbo) s.t.
3 - Alejandro Valverde (Movistar Team) at 23"
Maglia Rosa (pink), General Classification, sponsored by Enel - Steven Kruijswijk (Team Lotto NL - Jumbo)
Maglia Rossa (red), Sprint Classification, sponsored by Algida - Giacomo Nizzolo (Trek - Segafredo)
Maglia Azzurra (blue), Mountains Classification, sponsored by Banca Mediolanum - Damiano Cunego (Nippo - Vini Fantini)
Maglia Bianca (white), Young Rider Classification, sponsored by Eurospin - Bob Jungels (Etixx - Quick-Step)
1 - Steven Kruijswijk (Team Lotto NL - Jumbo)
2 - Esteban Chaves (Orica Greenedge) at 2'12"
3 - Vincenzo Nibali (Astana Pro Team) at 2'51"
4 - Alejandro Valverde (Movistar Team) at 3'29"
5 - Rafal Majka (Tinkoff) at 4'38"
Seconds after the stage finish, the stage winner said: "This is unbelievable. It's like a dream to win this stage. I came to the Giro well prepared for this stage in particular because uphill time trials have always been my forte. I did my best but I didn't expect to win. However, this is not going to be my last victory".
The Maglia Rosa said: "I really wanted to win the stage as well. I finished second yesterday as well. I heard towards the end that I was close to the victory but most importantly I gained time over my rivals on GC. I did everything for that and I'm confident that I'll be able to defend the Maglia Rosa during the last week".
TOMORROW SECOND AND LAST REST DAY
NEXT STAGE - 24 May
Stage 16 – Bressanone (Brixen) - Andalo – 132km
The stage is short, yet features long climbs and descents. Over the first 40km, the route runs initially downhill (although the road is deceptively flat) until past Bolzano (intermediate sprint). Here, after clearing the Mendel Pass climb, the road takes a long, undulating descent leading to the foot of the final ascent. The climb is in two parts, the first leading to Fai della Paganella (categorised climb), and the second running all the way up to the finish. 200m before the summit, in the urban area of Fai della Paganella, the climb gradient peaks as high as 15%.
The final 10km are clearly divided into two halves: first a fast-running descent (4km) on wide roads with sharp downhill gradients, then a mild climb (6km), growing steeper, up to 2km from the finish. Next comes a false-flat uphill drag. The finish line lies on an 80m long and 7m wide asphalt home stretch, running gently uphill.
PHOTO CREDIT: ANSA - PERI / DI MEO / ZENNARO
RCS Sport Cycling Press Office