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  “Astana were on the front controlling things. We all need to make them work for it. Every day in the front counts," sports director Marcus Ljungqvist says

Photo: Sirotti






15.05.2013 @ 21:26 Posted by Emil Axelgaard


Team Sky had a quiet day in today's Giro d'Italia where Salvatore Puccio was the only one from the team to be in the action as part of today's breakaway. Vincenzo Nibali's Astana squad had to work all day and the British team was happy to see their rivals forced to work hard for another day.


No team has defended as many leaders jerseys as Team Sky and so the British squad has an intimate knowledge of just how much it requires from a team to stay in pole position. However, the team finds itself in the unusual position of beating a little bit behind in this year's Giro d'Italia and so the team can afford to take a backseat while Vincenzo Nibali's Astana team work hard to control the race.


Today was another day where the black jerseys of Team Sky were seen just behind the Astana riders who had to chase the entire day to keep a big 20-man break in check. Despite the stage being a rather uneventful one for the GC contenders, sports director Marcus Ljungqvist had a positive outlook on the day's proceeding as the many hours spent on the front all add up to increase the Astana riders' fatigue.


“Astana were on the front controlling things," he said. "We all need to make them work for it. Every day in the front counts. There wasn’t much else we could do today and we’ll be looking to keep out of trouble again tomorrow on a day for the sprinters.”


However, one rider from the team was right in the mix in today's stage. Former maglia rosa wearer Salvatore Puccio made the unusual move for a Team Sky rider to join the day's early break. He was unable to follow Ramunas Navardauskas and Daniel Oss when they escaped in the flat run-in to the day's final climb and he could not match the power of KOM leader Stefano Pirazzi on the slopes. He was the best of the rest and sprinted to 4th ahead of Paul Martens and Danilo Di Luca and Ljungqvist was happy to see his young rider mix it up in the front of the race.


“It was a good day," he admitted. "The main thing from our point of view was just to get through as easy as possible. Puccio did a good job getting into the break and had a good go at it. It was such a big group away you need to come up with a plan and stick to it. In the end he did a good ride and so did Navardauskas."


The team will get another easy day in tomorrow's stage which is expected to finish in a bunch sprint while they prepare to hit their opponents hard in the two tough mountain stages in the weekend.


Starting at 14.15 you can follow tomorrow's stage on



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