Velonews: Twice Is Nice: Sacha Modolo Wins Giro Stage 17


Jan 3, 2005
<figure ><img title="Modolostage17" src=""/><p>Sacha Modolo (Lampre-Merida) sprinted to his second stage win at the Giro d'Italia in stage 17. Photo: Giro d'Italia</p></figure><p>With his second sprint victory in this year’s Giro d’Italia coming on stage 17, Sacha Modolo confirmed his role as Italy’s leading sprint star.</p>
<p>Modolo was cued up perfectly by his Lampre-Merida teammates, Roberto Ferrari and Max Richese, in the final kilometer of a 134km stage from Tirano to Lugano. The 27-year-old Italian jumped before the final, sweeping left-hand corner and held off Giacomo Nizzolo (Trek Factory Racing), who finished second. Giant-Alpecin’s Luka Mezgec finished third.</p>
<p>“Yesterday was very hard, but I had good legs today and it was nice and hot &mdash; the sort of day I like,” said Modolo. “Perhaps we could do with one more rider but, after months of hard work, in Max Richeze and Roberto Ferrari I have one of the best lead-out trains going. I’m afraid of no one.”</p>
<p>The general classification remained unchanged after the Giro’s shortest non-time trial stage, with Alberto Contador (Tinkoff-Saxo) holding a lead of more than four minutes over the Astana duo of Mikel Landa and Fabio Aru.</p>
<p>“So far, something has happened almost every day &mdash; a crash, a puncture,” said Contador. “I’m very happy because I got through the stage safely and arrived in Lugano, where I live, on my home roads. Yesterday was much more wearing than I would have liked, but I’m one day closer to Milan.”</p>
<p>Giacomo Berlato (Nippo-Vini Fantini), Iljo Keisse (Etixx-Quick-Step), and Marco Bandiera (Androni-Sidermec) made the early breakaway.</p>
<p>With 40 kilometers left, the gap hovered just over one minute.</p>
<p>Inside of the final 30km, the break was caught as the sprinters’ teams cued up for the finale.</p>
<p>On an uncategorized climb with about 25km to go, Patrick Gretsch (Ag2r La Mondiale) and Adam Hansen (Lotto-Soudal) attacked.</p>
<p>Rolling over the top of the hill, BMC’s Darwin Atapuma bridged to the two leaders.</p>
<p>Hansen soon got a gap on his two companions. As Atapuma and Gretsch bickered, the solo leader extended his advantage to 17 seconds.</p>
<p>The peloton caught the two chasers with less than 20km remaining.</p>
<p>Giant-Alpecin drove the pace at the front, and with a little over 10km to go, Hansen was caught.</p>
<p>Cannondale-Garmin’s Tom-Jelte Slagter attacked next, with 5.5km to go, as Tinkoff-Saxo rode tempo on the front of the bunch.</p>
<p>BMC was keen to get a rider involved in a late break, sending Philippe Gilbert to chase. However, the peloton was not willing to forgo a chance for a bunch sprint and brought the duo back with three kilometers left.</p>
<p>On several hairpin turns dropping to the finish beside Lake Como, Luca Paolini (Katusha) countered. But Trek Factory Racing chased the Italian back in time for the final kilometer.</p>
<p>Lampre put three riders on the front to start the sprint.</p>
<p>Modolo went early as he was challenged on the left by Mezgec, and he would not be denied his second stage win at the Giro.</p>
<p>On Thursday, the peloton rides stage 18 from Melide to Verbania, a 199km day with one category 1 climb, Monte Ologno, late in the day.</p>
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