Giro d'Italia 2014
After 11 stages characterized by boredom, rain, treacherous roads, many crashes and the absence of attacks among the leaders, finally the first time trial of 42 km between Barbaresco and Barolo, outlined the values in the field.
Cadel Evans got right from the beginning phases in pink jersey at the start, thanks to a good team time trial and a race conduct in the front of the peloton, which allowed him not to be involved in the many crashes that have crippled many other aspirants to the podium of Trieste.
Always in the front positions of the group, often in the midst of the sprinters, maybe Evans spent too much energy, as indirectly confirmed by his criticism of the Androni team tactics, responsible for him to have made the ride too harsh on the eve of the time trial.
Rigoberto Uran, who rode the first 11 stages always covered very well protected by teammates, came to to the time trial with dynamite in the legs.
A rider of small size, but physically strong, well positioned on the TT bike, dominated the opponents with a perfect race in terms of expressed power and the distribution of effort.
Already at the first intermediate, after 12.6 km of climbing at an average gradient of 3.5%, Uran had 12" over a surprising Ulissi, 25" on Majka, 30" on Quintana, 38" on Evans.
From there to the finish line he gave another 56" to Evans, 1'05" to Ulissi, 1'14" to Majka, 1'22" to Kelderman, 2'11" to Quintana.
Pozzovivo and Aru, performing good times on the climb, paid 2'24" and 2'44" respectively to Uran in the second part of the TT, the less favorable to their characteristics.
As you can see from the intermediate passages, Evans is the one that lost the less compared to the Colombian Omega Pharma riders: always very nice to look at on the TT bike, he though gave the impression of little power in the legs, perhaps spinning too short gear ratios.
The coming climbing stages will be needed to confirm or refute this impression.
Light climbers (Pozzovivo, Aru, a bruised Quintana) will try to attack, but it will be hard to undermine Uran, already second last year behind Nibali.