Bad luck has hit SAUNIER DUVAL-SCOTT and Riccardo Riccò again. Yesterday, in stage 2 of 43rd Tirreno-Adriatico, his rear wheel touched the bike of Linus Gerdemann (High Road). Today, in stage 3 (Gubbio-Montelupone, 195 kilometres), he fell after a crash at Km. 160. Although he was able to get back up and continue riding, he had to stay on the ground for some time and thus finished the race nearly 15´ down. It was a pity, as he was the big favourite for this stage and his team had the race under control when the peloton approached the gruelling final stretch in Montelupone, boasting 20% gradients. With "La Cobra" far behind, it was Piepoli who took advantage of the team´s situation in the defining part of the race. Unfortunately, his bike chain went off and so he could only land spot 5 when he could´ve done even better. The race went to former SAUNIER DUVAL rider -and Piepoli´s friend- Joaquim Rodríguez (Caisse d´Epargne), while Danilo Di Luca (LPR Brakes) and Niklas Axelsson (Diquigiovanni-Androni) filled out the podium. Axelsson also took the overall leadership from Enrico Gasparotto (Barloworld), who finished 6th. Despite the blow in his right hip, Riccò will be present in stage 4 tomorrow, from Porto Recanati to Civitanova Marche (166 kilometres), featuring a mountain pass, Corva, less than 10 kilometres before the finish line.
Mori and Passeron shine in Paris-Nice
While Piepoli fought for victory in Italy, two SAUNIER DUVAL-SCOTT´s men tried it hard to take stage 5 in Paris-Nice (Althen-des-Paluds - Sisteron, 172.5 kilometres): Manuele Mori and Aurelien Passeron. They stayed away for 100 kilometres with a group of seventeen. With 15 kilometres to go, Mori joined an attack by Carlos Barredo (Quick Step), Christophe Moreau (Agritubel), Pierre Rolland (Crédit Agricole), and Karsten Croon (CSC). But Barredo attacked twice more, and the "red bird" came in 3rd, behind Barredo and Kroon. Passeron finished 11th, 1´33" later. Tomorrow, the sixth stage will cover 206 kilometres between Sisteron and Cannes, featuring seven categorised climbs.
66th PARIS-NICE Results
Stage 5: 1. Barredo (Quick Step) 3:58:01; 2. Kroon (CSC) at 0:04; 3. Mori (SAUNIER DUVAL-SCOTT) s.t.; … 11. Passeron (SDS) at 1:35; 30. Jufré (SDS) at 2:18; 44. Cobo (SDS) at 2:20; 61. José A. Benítez (SDS) at 2:21; 73. Intxausti (SDS) at 2:23.
General Classification: 1. Gesink (Rabobank) 21:10:30; 2. Rebellin (Gerolsteiner) at 0:32; 3. Nocentini (Ag2r-La Mondiale) at 0:35; … 26. Cobo (SDS) at 15:18; 42. Jufré (SDS) at 26:15; 66. José A. Benítez (SDS) at 35:11; 68. Passeron (SDS) at 36:07; 84. Mori (SDS) at 44:11; 101. Intxausti (SDS) at 52:31.
43rd TIRRENO-ADRIATICO Results
Stage 3: 1. Joaquín Rodríguez (Caisse d’Epargne) 4:44:59; 2. Di Luca (LPR Brakes) at 0:12; 3. Axelsson (Diquigiovanni-Androni) s.t.; 4. Lövkvist (High Road) s.t.; 5. Piepoli (SAUNIER DUVAL-SCOTT) at 0:17; … 57. Capecchi (SDS) at 7:01; 76. "Litu" Gómez (SDS) at 10:02; 148. Belohvosciks (SDS) at 14:56; 149. Capelli (SDS) at 15:00; 158. Pagliarini (SDS) at 15:38; 162. Riccò (SDS) at 15:56; DNF. Bertogliati (SDS).
General Classification: 1. Axelsson (Diquigiovanni-Androni) 13:56:14; 2. Gasparotto (Barloworld) at 0:10; 3. Joaquín Rodríguez (Caisse d’Epargne) at 0:18; … 23. Piepoli (SDS) at 1:43; 47. Capecchi (SDS) at 7:14; 57. "Litu" Gómez (SDS) at 11:04; 82. Riccò (SDS) at 16:09; 149. Pagliarini (SDS) at 29:44; 151. Capelli (SDS) at 31:06; 160. Belohvosciks (SDS) at 36:53.