Vendrame Wins Stage 19 of Giro d’Italia

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05/24/2024| 0 comments
Andrea Vendrame climbing his bike on his way to victory
Andrea Vendrame on his way to victory RCS Sport - LaPresse

Vendrame Wins Stage 19 of Giro d’Italia

Andrea Vendrame is the winner of stage 19 at Giro d’Italia 2024; Tadej Pogacar (UAE Team Emirates) leads General Classification ahead of Daniel Martinez (Bora-Hansgrohe) and Geraint Thomas (Ineos-Grenadiers)

The riders in the Giro d’Italia peloton returned to mountainous territory in today’s stage 19 of Giro d’Italia 2024. Race organizer RCS Sport had designed a short 157-kilometer route from Mortegliano to Sappada. Despite its short distance, the route included two Category Two climbs and one Category Three climb.

The stage was designed to offer ample opportunity of success for the breakaway experts in the Giro peloton. As expected, a ten-man group broke away from the main peloton early in the stage. The group featured Magnus Sheffield (Ineos-Grenadiers), Simone Velasco (Astana), Ryan Mullen (Bora-Hansgrohe), Andrea Vendrame (AG2R), Andrea Piccolo (EF Education-EasyPost), Daan Hoole (Lidl-Trek), Lorenzo Milesi (Movistar), Giovanni Lonardi (Polti Kometa), and the Attila Valter and Edoardo Affini duo from Team Visma – Lease a Bike.

The group was caught later in the stage, but new attack groups immediately formed.

On the Passo Duron climb (Category Two, 4.3 km; 9.6%) the breakaway groups were again reshuffled, as some riders proved better on the climbs as anticipated. With 55 kilometers left, Jhonatan Narvaez (Ineos-Grenadiers), Georg Steinhauser (EF Education-EasyPost), Pelayo Sanchez (Movistar) and Julian Alaphilippe (Soudal-QuickStep) had a ten second lead over the first chase group.

Quinten Hermans (Alpecin-Deceuninck), Andrea Vendrame (AG2R), and Manuele Tarozzi (VF Group-Bardiani CSF-Faizane) were in the first chase group.

Twenty seconds behind them, five additional riders were chasing on the hardest climb of the today’s stage. The riders were Simone Velasco, Michael Valgren (EF Education-EasyPost), Luke Plapp (Jayco-Alula), Mattia Bais (Polti Kometa), and Jan Tratnik (Team Visma – Lease a Bike).

Further riders were down the road and the main peloton followed 08:35 minutes behind the frontmen.

Hermans made the jump to the front quartet in the final part of the Passo Duron. 53 kilometers of the stage now remained. This was the hardest climbing part of the stage and those who stuck with the frontmen would have a better chance of winning the stage.

The front groups reached the top of the Passo Duron and a dangerous descent now awaited the riders.

Vendrame also made the leap to the front group. The sextet now featured Vendrame, Hermans, Narvaez, Steinhauser, Pelayo Sanchez, and Alaphilippe. The riders were cooperating well and the advantage over the first chase group had increased to 36 seconds. Meanwhile, the main peloton was more than ten minutes behind and featured the General Classification favorites Tadej Pogacar (UAE Team Emirates), Daniel Martinez (Bora-Hansgrohe), and Geraint Thomas (Ineos-Grenadiers).

On the Selle Valcalda (Category 3; 6.5 km; 5.9%) the front group merged with riders from the first chase group. The group, headed by Alaphilippe, now featured Narvaez, Hermans, Vendrame, Steinhauser, Sanchez, Alaphilippe, and Plapp. Steinhauser was the first man across the top point of the category 3 climb at kilometer 121.7.

After a very decisive performance in this year’s Giro, Andrea Piccolo (EF Education-EasyPost) unfortunately crashed when he hit a pothole. He subsequently had to abandon the race after almost three weeks in the saddle and just before reaching the final finish line in Rome.

Next on the climbing menu of the day was the Cima Sappada (Category Two; 10.7 km; 44%). The final 2.9 kilometers of the climb would have an average incline percentage of 8.6 percent.

Before the riders in the front group reached the foot of the Cima Sappada, Andrea Vendrame (Decathlon AG2R La Mondiale) broke away from the group in a solo attack. He formed a 32 second lead and Narvaez, Steinhauser, Sanchez, Alaphilippe, and Plapp were now chasing. With 19 kilometers left of the stage, his lead had increased to 48 seconds. If the chase group didn’t respond at this point, the Italian would take the victory in today’s stage. 

Steinhauser launched an attack on the Cima Sappada in an attempt to catch Italian fast man Vendrame. Steinhauser was 01:08 minutes behind Vendrame with 9.5 kilometers left.

Vendrame appeared to be long gone and it appeared there was no chance of catching the Italian before the finish line. 

Sanchez caught Steinhauser with eight kilometers left and the duo pressed on together, though Sanchez tried to drop him. Vendrame now had a lead of 01:16 minutes. Steinhauser and Sanchez were too late.

While Vendrame pressed on solo on his way to a beautiful and admirable stage victory, Sanchez left Steinhauser behind with six kilometers left.

Andrea Vendrame continued solo and was the first rider to reach the finish line after an impressive solo effort. Vendrame won the stage in 03:51:05. What a marvelous performance from the 29-year-old Italian. 

Pelayo Sanchez was next to cross the finish line. Georg Steinhauser completed the stage podium a few seconds later.

The remaining riders, including the main peloton, eventually reached the finish and were eager to find warming comfort in the wet and cold mountainous weather conditions.

Tadej Pogacar remains general classification leader ahead of Daniel Martinez and Geraint Thomas.

Saturday’s stage 20 of the Giro d’Italia is the penultimate stage of this year’s race. The stage will be the final mountain stage of the Giro. The 184-kilometer route from Alpago to Bassano del Grappa will feature the Category One Monte Grappa climb, which will be climbed two times. Monte Grappa is 18.2 kilometers long and has an average incline percentage of 8.1 percent.

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

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