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"We can refocus on Tuesday’s flat stage where we will try again for Luka [Mezgec] who has been keeping himself out of trouble and trying to save as much energy as possible over the past few days," Reef says

Photo: © Cor Vos / Team Giant-Shimano

GEORG PREIDLER

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GIRO D'ITALIA

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LUKA MEZGEC

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TEAM SUNWEB

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TOBIAS LUDVIGSSON

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18.05.2014 @ 22:55 Posted by Emil Axelgaard

With two hard mountain stages, Team Giant-Shimano have naturally been a bit out of the spotlight in the Giro d'Italia. The team plans to return to the centre stage on Tuesday when they aim to win the tenth stage with Luka Mezgec.

 

The second mountain top finish in a row saw Georg Preidler fare much better than the previous day, finishing 42nd but limiting his loses to just 2’46″ by the end of the stage. Teammate Tobias Ludvigsson was next home in 56th at 5’45″ at the top of the final second category climb to Sestola.

 

The stage was won by Pieter Weening (Orica-GreenEDGE) after he and one other broke away from the remnants of the day’s breakaway to hold on to enough of an advantage to fight out the victory between themselves. The GC leaders came over the line just over a minute later meaning that Georg only lost around 1’40″ on the final climb.

 

The 172km stage started under sunny skies welcomed by the whole peloton. It took over 50km for a group to finally form but when it did it was a large group of 14-riders that pulled clear, without anybody from Team Giant-Shimano present.

 

With no immediate threats on GC up the road, the BMC team of GC leader Cadel Evans were quite content to let the group get a decent gap before starting to pick up the pace. The final climb was always going to see their advantage tumble but two of the leaders had enough of a gap on the climb to slow right down and look at each other before sprinting out the win between them.

 

Team Giant-Shimano focused once again on positioning Ludvigsson and Preidler at the bottom of the finishing climb before seeing how far they could stick with the leaders but they couldn’t hold the pace to the finish and were tailed off, first Ludvigsson then Preidler.

 

“The guys couldn’t quite hold on to the pace being set by the favourites up the final climb today,” confirmed Team Giant-Shimano coach, Marc Reef on the team bus after the finish.

 

“The plan was the same as yesterday, to position the two of them before the climb and see how they did on the climb, but they suffered once again.

 

2It has been a long first week of the Giro with the bad weather, crashes and long stages, so it is expected that the guys would feel some fatigue. They can now look forward to a day’s rest tomorrow and with all the guys now recovered from their falls and illnesses we can refocus on Tuesday’s flat stage where we will try again for Luka [Mezgec] who has been keeping himself out of trouble and trying to save as much energy as possible over the past few days.”

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