Giro d'Italia (Milan) 2017
A brutal showdown between the general classification contenders on the streets of Milan
After three weeks of intense racing at this years Giro d'Italia, the historic 100th edition of the race would be decided by an individual time trial from Monza to Milan. The riders faced an intense 29.3 km of individual racing .
Going into the stage, the general classification couldn't of been tighter. Dutch time trial champion Tom Dumoulin had held off attacks from the climbers but couldn't prevent losing the pink jersey on stage 19 to the Colombian climber Nairo Quintana.
The General Classification Pre Stage 21 (Top Five)
1. Nairo Quintana (Movistar) 90:00:38
2. Vincenzo Nibali (Bahrain Merida) + 39 sec
3. Thibaut Pinot (FDJ) + 43 sec
4. Tom Dumoulin (Team Sunweb) + 53 sec
5. Ilnur Zakarin (Katusha Alpecin) + 01:15 min
It all boiled down to this, the final stage of the Giro d'Italia in Milan. Although Nairo Quintana had a healthy lead over the other GC contenders, Tom Dumoulin's speciality of the time trial was ever present. The main question on everyones mind was "Can Tom Dumoulin ride 53 seconds quicker than Nairo Quintana, to reclaim the Maglia Rosa?"
Pre Race Build Up
The key general classification contenders began practising on the TT course on the morning of the stage. Mastering the details of the course and determining at what speed they should tackle the sketchy corners in Milan.
The Time Trial Begins
After the contenders tested out their legs on the course earlier on in the day, the race began. The atmosphere started to build as the thousands of fans from around the world gathered in Milano to welcome the riders.
After The Race
The final stage of the Giro d'Italia was extremely close between the General Classification contenders, with Nairo Quintana losing his lead to Tom Dumoulin in the final few seconds of the race.
Final General Classification (Top Five)
1. Tom Dumoulin (Team Sunweb) 90:34:54
2. Nairo Quintana (Movistar Team) + 31 Sec
3. Vincenzo Nibali (Bahrain-Merida) + 40 Sec
4. Thibaut Pinot (FDJ) + 1:17 Min
5. Ilnur Zakarin (Katusha-Alpecin) + 1:56 Min
Overall, the final stage of the 100th edition was one of the tightest in the races history. Heartbreak for the thousands of Colombian fans who had travelled half way across the world to support Nairo Quintana. The race exceeded our expectations, it had everything that is ever needed in a bike race. The overall win of Tom Dumoulin just shows that you don't have to be a mountain goat climber to win a grand tour. You just need a committed team and pure determination.
Congratulations to the race winner Tom Dumoulin and the whole Team Sunweb team on this historic victory.
By Jordan Benjamin-Sutton (Peloton Perspective)