Ulissi beats a combative Sagan in the anteroom of Etna

The Italian added his seventh victory in the Giro after being the strongest at the final level. His partner Conti, key. Sagan was second and Ganna maintains the lead.

Ulissi-beats-a-combative-Sagan-in-the-anteroom-of-Etna

The Giro had its first online stage on this second day through Sicily, the most populated island in the Mediterranean, with around five million people. The goal was in Agrigento, the Italian town where Frenchman Luc Leblanc was proclaimed World Champion in 1994, a World Cup that Miguel Indurain resigned to prepare for the Hour Record that he later achieved. The winner in the demanding final was for Diego Ulissi in an ideal arrival for his characteristics. In the decisive stage, the UAE hardened the pace for the climb (4th category level) with a Valerio Conti who took much of the credit for his teammate's victory. "We planned this finale and everything went as expected," said the winner. Ganna held the lead in a Giro that currently only speaks Italian after two stages. It is his career for nothing.

The first fugue of this edition, formed almost at the start, consisted of Gastauer (Ag2r), Bais (Androni), Tonelli (Bardiani), Van Empel (Vini) and a regular to be ahead of the peloton, Thomas de Gendt (Lotto ). The group kept them under control at all times and, despite the Belgian being the most active on the break (he was 3rd in the 2012 Giro), Bora and Sunweb's push was enough to neutralize 10 km from the finish line. One of the great victims of the day was Astana, which in just two days has been very weakened: Supermán López left the inaugural time trial after ending up in hospital due to a fall and the Russian Vlasov got off the bicycle on the second day for stomach problems

Fuglsang runs out of his two great teammates to be in the race for the overall. He will have to place a large part of his trust in the Navarrese Óscar Rodríguez, one of the five companions who remain with almost three weeks to go. And in Astana itself it raises some concern, because several members of the Kazakh team tested positive for coronavirus at the last minute before the race. The Giro cannot guarantee the extreme safety conditions that the Tour had, although RCS raised all possible scenarios with the aim of reaching Milan the next day 25.

In Agrigento, Sagan also made it clear that he is not coming to the Giro to fulfill after signing a great contract at the beginning of the season for being in the Corsa Rosa for the first time. Without teammates, alone, he was able to come back in the final ascent and was in the fight for the victory, although Ulissi, 31, did not give the slightest option and added his seventh victory in the Giro, the first since 2016. Sagan will wear an unusual jersey for him on the third day: the Mountain jersey, since he has four points. The two of them, along with Matthews (4th), were the three big favorites of the day. The Danish Honoré sneaked into the fight, and Deceuninck does not stop drawing young talents. The peloton entered five seconds later, with no gap between the favorites and with a good ninth place from Pello Bilbao. And on the third day, Etna, since this Monday he climbs the volcano in a final climb in which there will be a change of leader, with Thomas already placed third. No breathing time.



Photos from as.com
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