Giro d’Italia 2020: Debutant Almeida increases the lead in the pink jersey


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                    Originally, it was supposed to be just a backup plan in case it didn't work out with Remc Evenepoel as the leader of the Deceuninck - Quick Step team.
                </p><div id="remaining-article"><div class="article-object box"><div class="article-object-image"><picture class="image-wrapper" data-image-source="linked_article"><source data-srcset=";h=YrZHBYAu0lvIx0HIJMCKdw&amp;e=2145916800&amp;v=5 1x,;h=tHLHQdvzIFKvn-asbBVK9Q&amp;e=2145916800&amp;v=5 2x" media="(min-width: 768px)"><source data-srcset=";h=J3y-Beg7zwvTfCXYjnwVmg&amp;e=2145916800&amp;v=5 1x,;h=jSa5gedLP4OeSSkL7ZP4pw&amp;e=2145916800&amp;v=5 2x" media="(min-width: 480px)"><source data-srcset=";h=nALQtd9XbIUB9xvjuHMNag&amp;e=2145916800&amp;v=5 1x,;h=uA_gpANax7A-8SvGERcOAg&amp;e=2145916800&amp;v=5 2x" media="(min-width: 320px)"><img class="image lazyload" src=";h=uA_gpANax7A-8SvGERcOAg&amp;e=2145916800&amp;v=5" alt="Peter Sagan before the 4th stage." title="Peter Sagan before the 4th stage.  |  Š"/></source></source></source></picture></div><div class="article-object-aside"><p>

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                Giro: Peter Sagan is a blessing for cycling and he still has something to say, he said ...
            </div></div></div><p>But the 20-year-old Belgian "superman" Evenepoel has since the August race Around Lombardy after the season - a fracture of the pelvis, bruised lungs after falling into the gorge.  That's why Joao Almeida got the chance to become the team leader for the overall classification in the three-week race for the first time in his career.  And for now, it's up to him.

“Riding fourteen days is a new experience and it takes me another week. So far it has been the most at the Baby Giro (race under 23 – note) ten days,” poznamenal Joao Almeida, nečaký leader Giro d’Italia.

Saturday’s time trial from Conegliano to Valdobbiaden (34.1 km) was managed by the 22-year-old debutant as the sixth best and he increased the lead over the Dutchman Wilc Kelderman (Sunweb) from 40 to 56 seconds. The third Spaniard Pello Bilbao (Bahrain – McLaren) is already lagging behind significantly – 2:11 min. And before the time trial with one short but almost 12 percent climb, Almeida expressed concern that he had not yet completed such a long ride against the chronometer in a competitive career.

“I had a plan that I also fulfilled. I pushed for it more in the climbs, because it’s the easiest thing to get compared to the opponents. Later I rested a bit in the downhill runs. I fought a bit in the middle of the track, but I kept enough It was a bit of an experiment, because I’ve never ridden such a long time before and I lacked experience. “ said Almeida, quoted by the specialized portal

After the resignation of the British Geraint Thomas, Simon Yates or the Dutchman Steven Kruijswijk, the biggest favorites for the legendary pink jersey were supposed to be the home matador Vincenzo NIbali or the Danish universal Jakob Fuglsang. However, the facts are that after the 14th stage Nibali lags behind the Almeid in the fifth place 2:30 min and Fuglsang in the 12th place even 4:08 min. But appearances can be deceiving. However, the third year of Gira is far from decided.

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As for Almeid, he has not won a single stage yet. However, he never missed the front in important moments. He finished second and sixth in the time trials, in the 3rd stage on the way to Etna he was only a little behind the best climbers and since then he has been in the leader’s pink jersey. He also scored two third places and one second. On Friday in Monselica, in the stage with a classic conclusion, Diego Ulissi blew his victory by a few centimeters.

“I’ve gained more for my opponents so far than I expected. This is especially true for Kelderman and Nibali, which is very positive. I’m a little tired, but that’s probably all of us. It’s my first Grand Tour and I’m learning every day. Alone. I can’t guess how I’ll react in the last week. I’ll fight. “ dodal Almeida.

The last week offers up to four extremely challenging mountain stages with reaches to Italian ski resorts. Already on Sunday the peloton will ascend to Piancavallo (1288 m), on Tuesday the stage will culminate in Madonne di Campiglio (1514 m), on Wednesday in Laghi di Cancano (1935 m), but before that the cyclists take the trip to the highest point of the Passo di Stelvio at an altitude of 2746 m.

Finally, the penultimate 20th stage will culminate on Saturday in Sestriere (2039 m) and on the way to this world-famous ski resort, cyclists will also stand in the path of Colle dell’Agnello (2733 m). Just “surviving” these stages will be a great test of endurance for Petr Sagan, who still holds the 2nd place in the competition for a cyclamen jersey intended for the winner of the scoring competition. It is 37 points behind the French leader Arnaud Démar.


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