The opening three stages of the Giro d’Italia were fairly uneventful for Cannondale-Drapac. With a team full of climbers and rouleurs, the Sardinian sprint stages were never meant to be our place to shine.
“My feeling is that all the bunch wanted to come out of Sardinia safely and without losing any time,” said sport director Juanma Garate. “It was up to the sprint teams every day to control the race – even the second stage, which on paper had a chance for a successful breakaway. In the end, nobody wanted to fight for that because everybody knows that the second half of the Giro will be really hard.”
That’s not to say the first three stages were entirely without action or consequence.
“We lost a little bit with Pierre Rolland,” noted Garate. “He started the race thinking about the general classification and breakaways. He’s lost some time, so now we know he’s focused only on the stages. It’s good to know that now because from tomorrow the climbs will start.
“I was happy to see the motivation and cooperation of our riders,” Garate added. “I think [Davide] Formolo has taken a big step as a team leader. He’s focused on getting a good result here, and the team is really excited to support him in that. The mountains are coming, and that’s exciting, too. We have a really competitive team for climbing and breakaways.”
Before we look forward, a look back through the lenses of Ashley and Jered Gruber.