Tour of Italy: Aussie, Aussie, Aussie on Stage 2

First Grand Tour Victory for Orica-GreenEDGE as Matt Goss adds Giro stage to palmeres while Cavendish is decked by wayward Italian

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Goss sprints to victory while Cavendish is left on the floor after being taken out by Roberto Ferrari. Photo: Thomas van Bracht 

After five second place finishes in eight starts, Matt Goss snagged the elusive win on the third stage of the Giro d’Italia. The win today marks the first victory for the Australian outfit as the newly named Orica-GreenEDGE and the second Giro stage win of the Australian sprinter’s career. “I’m really happy to win today to pay back the team for placing me perfectly,” said Goss. “They worked incredibly hard for me all day.”

Behind Goss, laying on the road having lost a lot of skin in a high speed crash, lay Mark Cavendish. Team Sky’s Cavendish was launching his bid for back-to-back wins at the end of the 190km route when Androni Giocattoli rider Roberto Ferrari appeared to move out sharply from the left. The move took out the World Champion and on Twitter later, Cavendish made it known he was not pleased with the Italian’s wayward riding or his lack of remorse.

“Ouch! Crashing at 75kph isn’t nice! Nor is seeing Roberto Ferrari’s manoeuvre. Should be ashamed to take out Pink, Red & World Champ jerseys”. Is the team of Roberto Ferrari or the UCI going to do the right thing? Other riders, including myself, have been sent home for much less. Apparently Roberto Ferrari has said to journalists, when asked about the incident, that he can’t see what happens behind him and doesn’t care. ”

Same old, same old sprint stage

Ahead of the sprint, the race followed a fairly predictable format with a six-rider break allowed up the road. Ramunas Navardauskas (Garmin-Barracuda), Reto Hollenstein (Team NetApp), Alfredo Balloni (Farnese Vini-Selle Italia), Martijn Keizer (Vancansoleil-DCM), Mads Christensen (Saxo Bank) and Miguel Minguez (Euskateli-Euskadi) were not afforded the long leash the peloton gave yesterday’s break. Instead, today’s move never gained more than a four minute advantage. The field swallowed up Christensen, the sole survivor from the break, with 24 kilometers left to race.

Another big win in Italy for Matt Goss after his victory in Milan San Remo two years ago. Photo: Thomas van Bracht 

“That was quite the dangerous breakaway,” explained Sports Director Matt White. “We used Christian [Meier] and Jack [Bobridge] to control the break. It came back a bit quicker than we thought it would. The field was nervous because there were some strong riders in the move.”

Lars Bak (Lotto Belisol) once again launched a solo attack on the finishing circuits. The peloton never let the Dane out of their sight, and it was gruppo compatto at the 11 kilometer mark.

“For us, the last lap was the most important from a tactical perspective,” said White. “We wanted to give Goss a stress-free ride until the closing kilometers.”

Entering the final circuit lap, the teams with an interest in the sprint jostled for prime position while Orica-GreenEDGE patiently bided their time. Inside the last two kilometers, a five-rider Orica-GreenEDGE train moved up the left side of the peloton to place Goss into position.

Photo: Thomas van Bracht 

“The final circuit was quite flat, but there was corner that went downhill from 1900 meters to 1700 meters,” explained White. “The plan was to put five guys into that corner first. It didn’t work out exactly like that, but the guys still managed to get to the front with the numbers needed at the right time. We knew we could only go once. If we didn’t get the timing right, we would have gotten boxed in. It was way too fast of a sprint to surge for a second time.”

With slightly more than 100 meters left to race, Roberto Ferrari (Androni Giocattoli-Venezuela) deviated from his line on the straight run-in towards the finish. The move took out the front wheel of Mark Cavendish (Sky Procycling) and left riders behind scrambling to avoid a massive pile-up. Race leader Taylor Phinney (BMC) was also involved in the incident.

Goss had opened his sprint before the 100 meter mark and was ahead of the spill. He took the stage win several wheel lengths ahead of JJ Haedo (Saxo Bank) in second and Taylor Farrar (Garmin-Barracuda) in third.

“I have been really close to a win in recent races,” noted Goss. “To take my first win of the season here in our first Grand Tour is a fantastic feeling. I would like to dedicate this victory to the team.”

Gone, but not forgotten, Wouter Weylandt. Photo: Thomas van Bracht 

Team Sky – Cavendish taken out in sprint
A chaotic finish to the third stage of the Giro d’Italia saw both world champion Mark Cavendish and race leader Taylor Phinney involved in a high-speed pile up.

Cavendish could do nothing to prevent his front wheel being taken from beneath him as he crashed to the road but thankfully he was able to get back on his feet and carry his bike across the line. Overshadowed by that drama was the stage win of Matthew Goss (Orica-GreenEDGE) who went one better than the day before as he outsprinted Juan José Haedo (Saxo Bank) and Tyler Farrar (Garmin-Barracuda).

Phinney, who recovered from his spill to take his place on the podium, continues to lead the overall by nine seconds from Team Sky’s Geraint Thomas, with Alex Rasmussen (Garmin-Barracuda) a further four seconds back in third.

Richard Freeman, Team Sky Doctor: “Mark’s had a bad crash and is very uncomfortable but we’re taking care of him. We’re travelling as a team to Verona.”

Steven de Jongh, Team Sky Sports Director: “The team did another good job today. Flecha was really strong and helped control the breakaway just like Ian [Stannard] did yesterday. In the final the guys got separated a little bit but Cav was still well positioned to contest the sprint until Roberto Ferrari veered across and took away his front wheel in those last 100 metres. He lost a lot of skin but was able to pick himself up and complete the stage.

“The rest of the guys came through okay and hopefully we’ll have a hassle-free transfer to Verona now and be able to get some good work in tomorrow in preparation for Wednesday’s team time trial.”

Taylor Phinney on the podium before a long time spent at the hospital. Photo: Thomas van Bracht 

Race leader, BMC’s Taylor Phinney Survives Finish Line Crash
Taylor Phinney retained his lead at the Giro d’Italia Monday despite being involved in a crash near the finish line that left the BMC Racing Team rider with a puncture wound to his right ankle.

Phinney was among a half dozen riders who tumbled to the pavement with 125 meters to go after Roberto Ferrari crossed wheels with world road champion Mark Cavendish. Phinney couldn’t avoid the carnage and tumbled onto his right side.

“You don’t see a lot of crashes like that in the last kilometer, especially the last couple hundred meters,” Phinney said. “Where I was, I thought I was safe. I was staying up there (near the front) and was protected really well by the team. I hit the ground really hard and also must have had something hit me, because I have a little stab wound in my ankle.”

Taylor Phinney needed three stitches to close a wound to his right ankle, but X-rays revealed no broken bones for the leader of the Giro d’Italia.  He underwent X-rays on his right foot early Tuesday morning at a hospital in Verona, Italy, following a scheduled flight from Denmark for the first of two rest days in the three-week race. BMC Racing Team Doctor Dario Spinelli said preliminary review of the X-rays with the hospital’s overnight radiologist revealed no broken bones.

“We’ll take another look at his ankle later today and see how it’s healing,” Spinelli said. “It’s definitely good that this happened before a rest day, since the transport and treatment process took so long. Taylor will enjoy a good night of sleep without the stress of having to get ready to race.” The Giro d’Italia resumes Wednesday with the Stage 4 team time trial.

For his irregular riding, race commissaires relegated Ferrari to last place on the stage, which was won by Matthew Goss (Orica-GreenEDGE Cycling Team). BMC Racing Team’s Thor Hushovd was sixth in the 190-kilometer race.

Podium Appearance Important

Podium girls leave their mark on Taylor Phinney. Photo: Thomas van Bracht  

After remaining on the ground for several minutes, Phinney was helped into a rescue squad and his right ankle bandaged. Though he was not required by race rules to physically cross the finish line (since the mishap occurred in the final three kilometres), Phinney said he was feeling better and wanted to make an appearance on the podium. “I wanted to show the fans and the public and my family watching at home that I was OK,” he said.

“I felt like it was important to do that, to come back.” BMC Racing Team Assistant Director Fabio Baldato said Phinney will join the rest of the team on a charter flight Monday night from Denmark to Italy. “Team President Jim Ochowicz and our race doctor, Dario Spinelli, will go with Taylor to a hospital in Verona tonight and we’ll have an update afterwards,” Baldato said.

Matt Goss. Photo: Thomas van Bracht  

Photo: Thomas van Bracht  

Photo: Thomas van Bracht  


1 Matthew Goss Orica – GreenEDGE 04:20:53
2 Juan Jose Haedo Team Saxo Bank @ same time
3 Tyler Farrar Garmin – Barracuda @ same time
4 Arnaud Demare Equipe Cycliste FDJ – BigMat @ same time
5 Mark Renshaw Rabobank Cycling Team @ same time
6 Thor Hushovd BMC Racing Team @ same time
7 Alexander Kristoff Katusha Team @ same time
8 Romain Feillu Vacansoleil – DCM Pro Cycling Team @ same time
9 Fumiyuki Beppu Orica – GreenEDGE @ same time
10 Andrea Guardini Farnese Vini – Selle Italia @ same time
11 Alex Rasmussen Garmin – Barracuda @ same time
12 Geoffrey Soupe Equipe Cycliste FDJ – BigMat @ same time
13 Jack Bauer Garmin – Barracuda @ same time
14 Daniel Schorn Team NetApp @ same time
15 Giacomo Nizzolo RadioShack – Nissan @ same time
16 Manuel Belletti Ag2R – La Mondiale @ same time
17 Francisco José Ventoso Alberdi Movistar Team @ same time
18 Robert Hunter Garmin – Barracuda @ same time
19 Elia Favilli Farnese Vini – Selle Italia @ same time
20 Tomas Vaitkus Orica – GreenEDGE @ same time
21 Francesco Chicchi Omega Pharma – Quickstep @ same time
22 Jens Keukeleire Orica – GreenEDGE @ same time
23 Christian Meier Orica – GreenEDGE @ same time
24 Sergey Lagutin Vacansoleil – DCM Pro Cycling Team @ same time
25 Daniele Bennati RadioShack – Nissan @ same time
26 Brett Lancaster Orica – GreenEDGE @ same time
27 Matthias Brandle Team NetApp @ same time
28 Emanuele Sella Androni Giocattoli – Venezuela @ same time
29 Fabio Sabatini Liquigas – Cannondale @ same time
30 Luke Roberts Team Saxo Bank @ same time

1 Taylor Phinney BMC Racing Team 09:24:31
2 Geraint Thomas Sky Procycling 00:09
3 Alex Rasmussen Garmin – Barracuda 00:13
4 Manuele Boaro Team Saxo Bank 00:15
5 Ramunas Navardauskas Garmin – Barracuda 00:18
6 Gustav Erik Larsson Vacansoleil – DCM Pro Cycling Team 00:22
7 Brett Lancaster Orica – GreenEDGE 00:23
8 Matthew Goss Orica – GreenEDGE @ same time
9 Marco Pinotti BMC Racing Team 00:24
10 Jesse Sergent RadioShack – Nissan 00:26
11 Nelson Oliveira RadioShack – Nissan 00:27
12 Tomas Vaitkus Orica – GreenEDGE @ same time
13 Mark Cavendish Sky Procycling @ same time
14 Stef Clement Rabobank Cycling Team 00:28
15 Tyler Farrar Garmin – Barracuda @ same time
16 Robert Hunter Garmin – Barracuda @ same time
17 Jack Bauer Garmin – Barracuda @ same time
18 Maciej Bodnar Liquigas – Cannondale 00:29
19 Enrico Gasparotto Astana Pro Team @ same time
20 Ryder Hesjedal Garmin – Barracuda @ same time
21 Michal Kwiatkowski Omega Pharma – Quickstep @ same time
22 Dario Cataldo Omega Pharma – Quickstep 00:31
23 Filippo Pozzato Farnese Vini – Selle Italia 00:32
24 Giacomo Nizzolo RadioShack – Nissan @ same time
25 Thomas De Gendt Vacansoleil – DCM Pro Cycling Team @ same time
26 Svein Tuft Orica – GreenEDGE 00:33
27 Julien Vermote Omega Pharma – Quickstep @ same time
28 Adriano Malori Lampre – ISD @ same time
29 Fabio Sabatini Liquigas – Cannondale 00:34
30 Jan Barta Team NetApp @ same time
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