Giro 2018 Stage 20: Nieve climbs to victory, Froome holds off Dumoulin to secure GC-win

The last mountain stage features three long and hard climbs in the last 84 kilometres. Birthday boy Mikel Nieve kicks on the penultimate climb to leave the breakaway behind and he solos to victory. Tom Dumoulin puts pressure on Chris Froome on the last climb, but the Briton holds on to win his third Grand Tour victory in a row. (Slideshow route/profile)

Results 20th stage 2018 Giro d’Italia

1. Mikel Nieve (spa)
2. Robert Gesink (nld) + 2.17
3. Felix Grossschartner (ger) + 2.42
4. Giulio Ciccone (ita) + 3.45
5. Gianluca Brambilla (ita)+ 5.23
6. Wout Poels (nld) + 6.03
7. Chris Froome (gbr) s.t.
8. Davide Formolo (ita) s.t.
9. Domenico Pozzovivo (ita) s.t.
10. Richard Carapaz (ecu) s.t.

11. Sam Oomen (nld) s.t.
12. Miguel Ángel López (col) s.t.
13. Tom Dumoulin (nld) + 6.09
14. George Bennett (NZL) + 6.45
15. Patrick Konrad (aut) s.t.
16. Pello Bilbao (spa) s.t.
17. Alexandre Geniez (fra) + 7.04
84. Rohan Dennis (aus) + 45.32
88. Thibaut Pinot (fra) s.t.

GC after the 20th stage

1. Chris Froome (gbr)
2. Tom Dumoulin (nld) + 0.46
3. Miguel Ángel López (col) + 4.57
4. Richard Carapaz (ecu) + 5.44
5. Domenico Pozzovivo (ita) + 8.03
6. Pello Bilbao (spa) + 11.50
7. Patrick Konrad (aut) + 13.01
8. George Bennett (NZL) + 13.17
9. Sam Oomen (nld) + 14.18
10. Davide Formolo (ita) + 15.16

11. Alexandre Geniez (fra) + 17.30
12. Wout Poels (nld) + 17.40

Race report
Montaguti, Ballerini, Visconti, Viviani and Mosca go clear at km 19, while Mohoric, Gavazzi, Frapporti, Ciccone, Barbin, Grossschartner, Schwarzmann, Morabito, Neilands, Kreuziger, Nieve, Woods, Martin, Bouwman, Gesink, Lammertink, Brambilla, Stake Laengen, Ladagnous, Lindeman, Belletti and Conti bridge across. The breakaway reaches its shape at km 60.

Only the best climbers survive the Col Tsecore. Bouwman, Gesink, Ciccone, Woods, Conti, Brambilla, (birthday boy) Nieve, Grosschartner and Mohoric crest 5.32 ahead of the peloton.

Mohoric distances the others on descent, while Visconti hooks on. Mohoric tackles Col de Saint-Pantaléon 30 seconds ahead of the nine chasers and 6.30 ahead of the peloton.

Thibaut Pinot is dropped on the lower slopes, while Mohoric is reeled in by the chasers before Nieve speeds up. Only Brambilla, Grossschartner, Ciccone and Woods have enough juice to follow. Yet, the last two are dropped a little later.

Nieve once again accelerates 5 kms before the top and Grossschartner jumps to his wheel. But another attack and the Spaniard is alone in the lead. He travels approximately 1 minute before Grossschartner over the top. Gesink, Brambilla and Ciccone are next. The pack is more than 8 minutes in arrears.

On the last climb Nieve widens the gap to almost 2 minutes and he wins the stage. Gesink crosses the line in second.

Meanwhile, Movistar has been setting the pace in the peloton for Carapaz, but it’s Dumoulin who strikes. Not once, not twice… But Froome returns every time. The group of favourites is down to Froome, Dumoulin, López, Carapaz, Pozzovivo, Oomen and Formolo, while Poels hooks on later.

With 6 kms to go Froome counters the next Dumoulin attack and he is accompanied by Carapaz, López and Pozzovivo and Formolo. Dumoulin comes clawing back. As do Poels and Oomen.

Then Carapaz attacks and López responds. The two are fighting for third place overall and the young rider classification. The Colombian is glued to his rival’s wheel and Carapaz is unable to drop him. In de final few hundred metres the favourites are approaching and when Poels opens the sprint with Froome the two are caught.

Chris Froome takes the 2018 Giro d’Italia ahead of Tom Dumoulin and Miguel Ángel López, who also wins the younger rider classification.

Read also: route 20th stage 2018 Giro d’Italia.

Giro d’Italia 2018 stage 20: Route maps, height profiles, and more

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Mikel Nieve

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