Giro d’Italia 2012 stage 11 photo gallery by Graham Watson>>

Italian sprinter Roberto Ferrari won today’s stage of the Giro d’Italia, this time with a perfect bit of bike riding. One week ago the Androni-Giacattoli was the pariah of the peloton after he veered wildly to his right, causing Mark Cavendish and race leader Taylor Phinney to crash heavily, today Ferrari nailed it.

The tight finish in Montecatini-Terme had crash written all over it, with narrow roads and tight left and right hand bends to negotiate inside the last kilometre. Far from being the rider to avoid in the melee, today Ferrari was the one to follow.

Tucked in behind Cavendish, Ferrari flew through the final right hand bend with 300m to go and immediately got the jump on the world champ. Cavendish had been following his team mate Geraint Thomas – who was behind Pete Kennaugh and Thomas Vaitkus – but had to make a split second decision to follow Ferrari out of the corner instead.

But Cavendish couldn’t get the Italian riders wheel and looked to be labouring too big a gear to accelerate out of the corner after he’d lost too much speed. The peloton had already done a lap of the finishing circuit so Cavendish knew what was coming, and learnt back in his days as an amateur to use a finishing circuit as practice to get his gearing correct.

Getting a big gear turning after 255km in the saddle isn’t easy, and the Brit only managed fourth place in the sprint – the first time he’s been beaten in a sprint since stage three of the Tour of Oman in February.

Those 255kms made for the longest stage of the race, and one that few riders seemed interested in racing. The obligatory escape formed but they never got too far, and with 40km to go the bunch had to let the gap go back out so as not to catch them too early and then have to work harder still to control proceedings.

Manuele Boaro looked good as he rode away from the escape, but even his time trialling skills couldn’t keep the peloton at bay as the sprint teams sniffed another win. On the lap of the finish town a testing little 2.9km climb created a minor panic as Roman Kreuziger and Michele Scarponi jumped on to the back of a little leading group, but they were never more than a stones throw away from the front of the bunch.

Sky and Saxo Bank weren’t going to let anything get away, neither were the teams of the other GC contenders, and it was soon all back together over the top of the fourth cat climb. Cavendish was near the front over the climb and so looked to be in good shape. All that was left was for him to finish it off – even the omens were on his side; the last time the Giro finished here in 2003 Mario Cipollini won in the rainbow jersey.

But it wasn’t to be. It’s a rare sight, seeing Cavendish beaten in a sprint and it’s not something he enjoys. All the worse seeing the rider who decked him last week with his arms in the air. Cav’s consolation came as he took the sprinters red jersey from Matt Goss who finished over ten minutes down today.

Results

Giro d’Italia 2012, stage 11: Assisi to Montecatini Terme, 255km

1. Roberto Ferrari (Ita) Androni-Giocattoli in 6-49-05


2. Francesco Chicchi (Ita) Omega Pharma-QuickStep s.t.

3. Tomas Vaitkus (Ltu) Orica-GreenEdge s.t.

4. Mark Cavendish (GBr) Sky s.t.

5. Manuel Belletti (Ita) Ag2r-La Mondiale s.t.

6. Giacomo Nizzolo (Ita) RadioShack-Nissan s.t.

7. Daniel Schorn (Aut) NetApp s.t.

8. Arnaud Demare (Fra) FDJ-BigMat s.t.

9. Danilo Wyss (Sui) BMC Racing s.t.

10. Geoffrey Soupe (Fra) FDJ-BigMat s.t.

 

Overall classification after stage 11

1. Joaquin Rodriguez (Spa) Katusha in 47-16-39

2. Ryder Hesjedal (Can) Garmin-Barracuda at 17 secs

3. Paolo Tiralongo (Ita) Astana at 32 secs

4. Roman Kreuziger (Svk) Astana at 52 secs

5. Benat Inxausti (Spa) Movistar at 52 secs

6. Ivan Basso (Ita) Liquigas-Cannondale at 57 secs

7. Damiano Caruso (Ita) Liquigas-Cannondale at 1-02

8. Dario Cataldo (Ita) Omega Pharma-QuickStep at 1-03





Start in Assisi





Roberto Ferrari wins stage 11





Joaquin Rodriguez keeps the lead





Mark Cavendish in the points classification lead

Giro d’Italia 2012: Latest news



Hesjedal happy with Giro performance despite losing lead



Pinotti alters Giro plans after losing time in mountains



Pozzato apologises for role in causing crash



Hesjedal has tough day as Giro leader



Schleck building form in Giro for final week in Alps



English speakers on top



Giro favourites to make move in first mountain finish



Malori will relish time in Giro lead



Sky’s Giro team time trial disappointment



Phinney’s terrible day sees Giro lead slip away



Teams ready for Giro’s team time trial



Phinney given all-clear after Giro crash



Ferrari should be ashamed of Giro sprint, says Cavendish



Giro remembers Wouter Weylandt



Cavendish and Thomas a winning combo, says Brailsford



Geraint Thomas narrowly misses out on Giro lead



Phinney realises Giro dream

Giro d’Italia 2012: Live coverage



Giro d’Italia 2012 live text coverage schedule

Giro d’Italia 2012: Stage reports

Stage 11: Ferrari wins Giro stage on ride to redemption

Stage 10: Rodriguez wins thrilling finale to take lead

Stage nine: Ventoso wins in Frosinone as Goss and Cavendish fall

Stage eight: Pozzovivo takes another Giro win

Stage seven: Hesjedal moves into Giro lead

Stage six: Rubiano solos to epic Giro stage win

Stage five: Cavendish bounces back for another stage win

Stage four: Garmin-Barracuda win TTT to take lead

Stage three: Goss wins in Horsens as Cavendish and Phinney crash

Stage two: Cavendish wins in Herning

Stage one: Phinney wins time trial

Giro d’Italia 2012: Photo galleries



Stage 11 photo gallery



Stage 10 photo gallery



Stage nine photo gallery



Stage eight photo gallery



Stage seven photo gallery



Stage six photo gallery



Stage five photo gallery



Stage four photo gallery



Stage three photo gallery



Stage two photo gallery



Stage one photo gallery

Giro d’Italia 2012: Teams and riders



Giro d’Italia 2012 start list

Giro d’Italia 2012: TV guide



Giro d’Italia 2012: British Eurosport TV schedule

Related links



Giro d’Italia 2012: The Big Preview



Cycling Weekly’s Giro d’Italia section

This article is from

Cycling Weekly – In print and online, Cycling Weekly is the best source of breaking news, race reportage, reliable fitness advice, trustworthy product reviews and inspirational features. First published in 1891, the magazine has an amazing and unrivalled heritage, having been at the heart of British cycling for over 120 years.

Subscribe to Cycling Weekly in print » | Read the digital edition »

  • Ken Evans

    That red jersey suits Cav,
    it matches the colour of the road-rash caused by Ferrari.

  • JohnD

    The Giro organisers have clearly stuck in corners and extended several flat stages over 200km as levellers to spice up sprints. I notice they’ve also put finishing lines nearer bends to kill finishing straights (compare with course for Cipo’s win in same town in 2003).

    Judging from how tired the best sprinters are starting to look, the strategy is working.