Breakaway trio survive on the fifth stage of the Giro-Rosa, Spratt up to 4th on GCTue 10 Jul 2018
Today was the first day to test the legs on the climbs as the Giro-Rosa begins the final hilly phase and a breakaway of three riders took their chances to go for a opportunistic stage win.
Mitchelton-SCOTT leaders Annemiek van Vleuten and Amanda Spratt climbed into a select group and finished with the other main general classification leaders, one minute behind a breakaway trio that escaped after the only categorised climb of the day.
Ruth Winder (Team Sunweb) was the best from the group of three, sprinting to the stage win and moving into the overall race lead after five days of racing, with Spratt and Van Vleuten sitting comfortably overall in fourth and fifth position.
First large breakaway
After 20kilometres of racing a group of 12riders jumped ahead of the peloton, with most of the big named teams present. The group hovered around 50second ahead with Sarah Roy respresented in the move for Mitchelton-SCOTT.
As the race drew closer to the only categorised climb of the day, the peloton quickly upped the tempo and instantly the 12 rider breakaway group was reeled back in.
First real climb of the tour
The riders began the five kilometre climb, Someraro with 38kilometres to go and with a high pace into the bottom of the climb and steep slopes, the front of the race reduced to just 36riders.
At the top of the GPM, the road continued to rise up to Gignese, when the three riders attacked away and established a gap. With no real chase from the front group of 30riders, the leaders opened up over a one minute advantage.
General classifcation change
Winder now leads overall, one minute 18seconds ahead but with five hard stages to come, the team remain calm and confident that they can take the time back in the mountains.
"Ruth Winder attacked and the other two riders went across to her on the rolling part directly after the GPM. We weren't too concerned with the move, with though Elisa Longo-Borghini (wiggle-High5) would attack as it is in her home town, so we were watching her closely.
"We were waiting to see if there was a good place to attack but it was still a pretty big bunch and nothing was really going so we just decided to conserve energy and get safely to the finish.
"I am feeling really good, legs are good and it felt nice to go up some harder terrain today and I think we are ready to go up something even harder now."
Annemiek van Vleuten
"It was a good day we were always in control and it was really good we had Roy in the breakaway, then we would have someone extra up there when the hill started. The girls did an awesome leadout into the GPM we were in an awesome position into the bottom.
"It was a good day to test our legs a little bit on the climb today and we can go into tomorrow's stage with confidence, finishing 10kilometres uphill."
Gene Bates - Sport director
"No teams were really chasing that group once they got away, WaowDeals had numbers so we thought they may chase. Winder now has one minute advantage but we still have a lot of hard climbs to come and the race can still change a lot."
Giro-Rosa stage 5 results:
1. Ruth Winder (Team Sunweb) 3:01
2. Tayler Wiles (Trek-Drops) +0:01
3. Alice Arzuffi (Bizkaia Durango) +0:01
8. Amanda Spratt (Mitchelton-SCOTT) +1:17
General classification after stage 5:
1. Ruth Winder (Team Sunweb) 12:39
2. Leah Kirchmann (Team Sunweb) +1:18
3. Lucinda Brand (Team Sunweb) +1:24
4. Amanda Spratt (Mitchelton-SCOTT) +1:29
Photo courtesy of Getty Images