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Giro d’Italia 2021: Filippo Ganna Wins Opening Stage

The 104th Giro d’Italia got underway Saturday morning with a 8.6 kilometer individual time trial around Torino. 

 

 

 

The reigning time trial World Champion, Filippo Ganna, used the opportunity to make his mark on the race. The young Italian blew away the competition, winning by ten seconds. Dating back to a season ago, Ganna has now won four straight Giro d’Italia time trials.

 

After staying quiet at the Tour de Romandie last week, there were some questions about whether Ganna was at his best heading into the Giro. The Ineos man firmly put those worries to bed with his performance today.

 

As the winner of the first stage, Ganna has moved into the overall lead. The 24-year-old also leads the youth and points classifications. 

 

Ganna will have the opportunity to hang onto the maglia rosa for a few days. Stage four from Piacenza to Sestola looks as though it will be the first real opportunity for other riders to knock him off his perch.

 

Giro d’Italia Stage One Results

 

The top 20 on the day featured an interesting mix of riders. The usual time trial specialists are joined by a few GC contenders who will hope to use today as a launch pad for the next three weeks.

 

As the stage winner, Ganna deserves a lot of praise for his performance. His time on the day was quick enough to make it the third fastest time trial in Giro d’Italia history.

 

 

Ganna took the win ahead of a very impressive Jumbo-Visma duo. Edoardo Affini finished second, with Tobias Foss turning a few heads in third.

 

Remi Cavagna was considered by many to be a favorite for victory after his time trial win at the Tour de Romandie last Sunday. He ended up coming home in fifth, 18 seconds off the pace of Ganna.

 

Among the GC men, João Almeida was the strongest on the day. The Portuguese finished fourth, just four seconds off the podium. Almeida’s Deceuninck – Quick-Step teammate Remco Evenepoel was also strong. The 21-year-old came home in seventh place.

 

Aleksandr Vlasov also deserves a mention for his 11th place finish. 

 

The two biggest pre-race favorites, Simon Yates and Egan Bernal, lost 38 and 39 seconds respectively on the day.

 

Final Thoughts

 

The opening stage of the Giro d’Italia went mostly according to plan.

 

In terms of stage honors, Filippo Ganna defended his throne from a season ago. The Italian was not at his best in Romandie, but today he reminded everyone exactly why he is the best time trialist in the world.

 

In the fight for the overall classification, not too much has been revealed. As expected, Almeida showed his comfort in the TT discipline. However, none of the big pre-race favorites lost a significant amount of time. 

 

The riders will continue easing their way into the Giro with a couple of mostly flat stages over the next few days. 

 

Stage four will offer a few hills for those looking for chances to attack. Stage six will be the first real chance for the climbers to show themselves.  

 

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