BELFORT, France (Reuters) – Vincenzo Nibali has now not given up on being a contender on the Excursion de France within the wake of a difficult Giro d’Italia regardless of dropping floor within the first hilltop end on Thursday, his trainer stated.
FILE PHOTO: Biking – Excursion de France – The 175.5-km Degree Five from Saint-Die-des-Vosges to Colmar – July 10, 2019 – Bahrain-Merida rider Vincenzo Nibali of Italy ahead of the beginning. REUTERS/Christian Hartmann
Nibali is certainly one of two lively riders with titles at the Excursion, the Giro and the Vuelta a Espana.
He ended the Giro, his house grand excursion, in 2nd position in Might and the Sicilian were looking ahead to the 6th level end on the peak of the Planche des Belles Filles to evaluate his Excursion de France shape.
A winner there in 2014 — the 12 months he gained the Excursion — Nibali struggled within the ultimate a part of the ascent, a brutal effort on graveled roads within the Vosges area, dropping 51 seconds to protecting champion Geraint Thomas of Britain.
“He was once nonetheless with the most efficient with 500 meters to move however that’s when he were given dropped,” trainer Paolo Slongo advised Reuters on Friday ahead of the beginning of the 7th level to Chalon sur Saone.
“It’s a atypical scenario for the reason that GC (common classification) isn’t long past however he’s been distanced a bit of.”
General, Nibali lies in 20th position, 1:07 at the back of Thomas, the most efficient positioned of the principle contenders.
“We can take it day-to-day and spot how the sensations are,” Slongo, who has overseen all 4 of Nibali’s grand excursion victories and any other seven podium finishes, defined.
Making an attempt to win the Giro and the Excursion in the similar season is among the maximum tough demanding situations within the game, with Italian Marco Pantani the ultimate rider to succeed in the double in 1998.
“The Giro was once his first function after which got here the Excursion. We knew that driving two grands excursions can be tough. He’s 1:07 at the back of Thomas, it’s now not a disastrous scenario.”
A number of contenders, together with Colombian Egan Bernal, France’s Thibaut Pinot or Colombia’s Nairo Quintana, are forward of Nibali.
But the 34-year-old has the power to manage a killer blow and with six extra mountain levels and 4 mountain-top finishes to return, there will likely be numerous alternatives to show the placement round.
“Letting move of the GC can be silly,” stated Slongo.
“We’ll see how issues move however we can experience with out rigidity, extra unfastened, and if the overall classification is long past sooner or later we’ll see about profitable levels.”
Whilst Nibali’s efficiency was once a bit of disappointing, Slongo had lots to have fun on Thursday.
The Italian’s workforce mate Dylan Teuns gained the level from a breakaway and Giulio Ciccone, who completed 2nd, claimed the entire chief’s yellow jersey.
“I used to be glad the previous day as a result of we gained the level and in addition as a result of a tender Italian rider took the yellow jersey. It’s at all times a excitement and a excellent factor for Italian biking,” stated Slongo, who has additionally coached Giro winner Ivan Basso, dash specialist Elia Viviani and three-times international champion Peter Sagan, who’re all Excursion de France level winners.
Reporting through Julien Pretot; Enhancing through Toby Davis