Steinhauser Climbs to Victory in Stage 17 of Giro d’Italia

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05/22/2024| 0 comments
Georg Steinhauser crosses finish line as winner of stage 17 of Giro d'Italia for EF Education-EasyPost
Georg Steinhauser proudly wins stage 17 of Giro d'Italia 2024 RCS Sport - LaPresse

Steinhauser Climbs to Victory in Stage 17 of Giro d’Italia

Georg Steinhauser (Germany) has won stage 17 of Giro d’Italia 2024 for EF Education-EasyPost – a stage that also included the Cima Coppi of this year’s Giro d’Italia; Tadej Pogacar (UAE Team Emirates) remains General Classification leader ahead of Geraint Thomas (Ineos-Grenadiers) and Daniel Martinez (Bora-Hansgrohe)

Stage 17 of Giro d’Italia offered an exciting mountainous menu to riders in the Giro peloton and spectators at home and along the roads of Northern Italy. The action was taking place in Trentino and South Tyrol. The route from Selva di Val Gardena to Passo Brocon was 159 kilometers short. Would this be an additional stage in which “Tadej the Canibal” would dominate, divide and conquer?

There would be no soft start and warmup for tired riders as the stage would start with a climb to the top of the Passo Sella, which would also be the Cima Coppi – or highest point – of the 2024 Giro d’Italia. In addition to the Passo Sella (Outside Category; 9 km; 7.3%), the stage also featured Passo Rolle (Category One; 19.8 km; 4.6%), Passo Gobbera (Category Three; 5.7 km; 5.8%), and the Passo Brocon, which would be climbed in a Category Two (13.6 km; 6.5 km) and a Category One (4.2 km; 9.6%) version to finish the stage.

It was uphill for the riders from the start and a nine-man breakaway group gained a small advantage of seven seconds on the Passo Sella (HC). They were reeled in later on the climb. 

There was illness within the peloton and some riders were afraid of not reaching the stage finish inside today’s time limit. Riders such as Mikkel Bjerg (UAE Team Emirates) had been ill for about a week.

Daniel Martinez (Bora-Hansgrohe) was apparently having a difficult start phase of the stage. He was spotted sweating while sitting too far back in the peloton. Today might offer a chance for Geraint Thomas to reconquer the second spot on the General Classification podium?

Giulio Pellizzari (VF Group-Bardiani CSF-Faizane) attacked to be first across the Passo Sella and thereby win the popular Cima Coppi prize. Julian Alaphilippe (Soudal-QuickStep) responded. But it was Nairo Quintana who tried to pass Pellizzari in the final centimeters to gain some success for himself and his Movistar Team. A bike throw would decide the winner. Who was the first rider to reach the Cima Coppi? The winner was 20-year-old Pellizzari.

A fast descent now awaited the riders in the Giro d’Italia peloton.

A four-man group built a small advantage in the long descent. The group featured Amanuel Ghebreigzabhier (Lidl-Trek), Quintana, Alaphilippe, and Pellizzari. The participants in the four-man group were later joined by Davide Ballerini (Astana), Georg Steinhauser (EF Education-EasyPost), Marco Frigo (Team PremierTech), and Daminao Caruso (Bahrain Victorious). Nicola Conci (Alpecin-Deceuninck) was chasing fifteen seconds behind, while the peloton was 25 seconds behind the front group. 120 kilometer now remained.

While Conci was almost caught by the peloton, Attila Valter attacked for Team Visma-Lease a Bike with 118 kilometers left.

The breakaway group was reshuffled on the Passo Rolle (Category One; 19.8 km; 4.6%). With two kilometers left of the climb the front breakaway group now featured Conci, Ballerini, Steinhauser, Frigo, Ghebreigzabhier, Quintana, Alaphilippe, Valter, Pellizzari, and Caruso. They had a lead of two minutes over the chasing peloton, which was spearheaded by Team DSM-Firmenich-PostNL.

A dangerous descent awaited the Giro cyclists following the Passo Rolle. To make matters even worse, the conditions were rainy, and the wet roads were slippery. Despite the rainy weather, several of the professional cyclists in the peloton were wearing their FlowBio hydration sensors. This was a very important race, and the riders needed the best possible data.

The advantage of the front ten-man breakaway group was reduced to 45, then 30 seconds on the descent as the main peloton was being aggressively spearheaded by the DSM-Firmenich-PostNL team – they were obviously on an important mission in today’s stage 17.

The next climb to follow was the Passo Gobbera (Category Three; 5.7 km; 5.8%).

The riders entered the Passo Gobbera and Romain Bardet (Team DSM-Firmenich) launched an attack from the peloton. The front group was just twenty seconds ahead of him at this point.

The Bardet attack group was caught, and most of the front breakaway group was also reeled in on the Passo Gobbera. Though it was just a Category Three climb, it had caused significant changes. Only Steinhauser and Ghebreigzabhier carried on at the front.

The roads were slowly drying up and an additional fast descent followed for the Giro d’Italia riders. Fifty kilometers remained of today’s stage 17. Riders at the front of the main peloton were discussing and arguing.

Ineos-Grenadiers moved to the front of the peloton and set a fast pace for their leader Geraint Thomas. Steinhauser and Ghebreigzabhier had a lead of 53 seconds with 43.5 kilometers remaining. The Passo Brocon was a Category Two climb - 13.6 kilometers with an average gradient of 6.5%. 

While the peloton carried on up the Passo Brocon, the Soudal-QuickStep moved to the front under close supervision from the Ineos-Grenadiers team.

It started raining again while the riders were continuing their climb up the Passo Brocon. Steinhauser had left Ghebreigzabhier behind and now continued relentlessly up the climb in solo fashion. 

Bahrain-Victorious took control at the front of the main peloton.

Ghebreigzabhier was chasing eighteen seconds behind Steinhauser. Christian Scaroni (Astana) and Marco Frigo (PremierTech) were 01:45 minutes behind the German leader. The peloton was at 02:05 minutes.

Steinhauser was first over the top of the Passo Brocon and a dangerous and wet descent awaited. The tarmac had been renewed, but Steinhauser’s effort would also have to be renewed as the Passo Brocon climb would have to be climbed two times in this stage. The finish line awaited the next time the riders reached the top.

Steinhauser entered the final ten kilometers of the stage with an advantage of 59 seconds over Ghebreigzabhier and a 02:53 minute advantage over the main peloton featuring Tadej Pogacar (UAE Team Emirates), Geraint Thomas (Ineos-Grenadiers), Daniel Martinez (Bora-Hansgrohe) and other General Classification favorites. Would today bring the 22-year-old German a magnificent stage victory in a Giro stage?

EF Education-EasyPost’s Georg Steinhauser was still in the lead with four kilometers left of the stage. Ghebreigzabhier, however, was caught by the chasing peloton, which was headed by Ineos-Grenadiers. Thomas was right behind his teammate.

The German Kraftwerk pushed any energy he had left in his body into the pedals as he fought his way through the green terrain in mountainous northern Italy.

Dani Martinez (Bora-Hansgrohe) had recovered his strength and attacked from the main peloton with three kilometers left for the main peloton. Tadej Pogacar countered and built a small gap. Thomas, Martinez, Einer Rubio (Movistar), Romain Bardet and Antonio Tiberi formed a chase group behind the General Classification leader.

Steinhauser crossed the finish line as winner of stage 17 of Giro d’Italia 2024. What a magnificent victory for Team EF Education-EasyPost.

Pogacar crossed the finish line in second place 01:24 minutes behind Steinhauser. Antonio Tiberi completed the stage podium 01:42 minutes after the stage winner.

“It is something unbelievable for me. I’ve known for a long time I had good legs in this race and today I thought wow, I have good legs. In the beginning I got caught during my first breakaway attempt, but I decided to try again,” Steinhauser told shortly after the finish. 

“The roads were super slippery and wet. I was super nervous on the last climb, and I knew Pogacar was attacking, but I thought to myself, I will make it,” Steinhauser added.

Tomorrow’s stage 18 of Giro d’Italia 2024 will take the riders down from the mountains. The stage takes the riders from Fiera di Primiero to Padova on a 178-kilometer route.

Stay tuned to for complete race coverage from Giro d’Italia 2024.

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