Team News: Kruijswijk Increases Lead in Giro


LottoNL-Jumbo’s Steven Kruijswijk strengthened his lead in the general classification of the Giro d’Italia on stage 16

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Team News: Kruijswijk Increases Lead in Giro

LottoNL-Jumbo’s Steven Kruijswijk strengthened his lead in the general classification of the Giro d’Italia On stage 16. The pink jersey was second on the short stage behind Alejandro Valverde, taking bonus seconds and time on his rivals further down the climb into Andalo.

He leads Esteban Chaves (Orica – GreenEDGE) by three minutes and 3-23 on Alejandro Valverde (Movistar). Vincenzo Nibali (Team Astana) lost time and dropped to fourth place in the standings.

The stage began quickly and in the first hour, the riders covered almost 50 kilometres. Some riders tried to get away on the flat, but could not make a gap. The bomb exploded on the Passo della Mendola where a group of six riders including Jungels (Etixx – Quick Step) and Kangert (Team Astana) broke away.

“We hit the first mountain hard. Everybody attacked,” said Sports Director Addy Engels. “Movistar and later Astana tried, and then a group of six riders got away. The gap to Steven was not very big and he closed the gap himself. Battaglin stayed with him for a long time. At the top, he sat right behind the group with Chaves, but he couldn’t close the small gap due to the high tempo.”

“We are more than satisfied after today because Steven picks up time on the competition. His level is very high. This is not only consolidating the lead but increasing it without having to launch an action himself.”

After the Passo della Mendola, Kruijswijk reacted to an attack by Valverde and put Nibali in trouble. “I felt good and attacked on the last mountain along with Valverde,” said Kruijswijk. “Nibali could no longer follow and Chaves was already in pursuit. I wanted to give the team a victory but sprinting against Valverde is difficult. I had no chance.”

“Obviously, I wanted to win time for the standings. I sat the whole day where I needed to, but I also had to work hard to get into the leading group. The situation in the race was prefect and the time gain is sweet. Over the next few days, the stages are flat but then you have to be very careful.”

The stages Wednesday and Thursday are almost flat. On Friday, the stage finishes on a first category climb and Saturday, the stage covers three climbs of first category.




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