Giro d'Italia: Contador regains lead, Kiryienka wins time trial

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Giro d’Italia 2015: Alberto Contador regains lead as Vasil Kiryienka wins time trial

Team Sky sets standard as El Pistolero storms back into pink jersey

Alberto Contador (Tinkoff-Saxo) regained the race lead on stage 14 of the Giro d’Italia after finishing third behind surprise winner Vasil Kiryienka (Team Sky) on the day.

El Pistolero was the only GC contender to finish in the top ten on the day, after a tailwind which had favoured the early starters shifted later in the stage.

And as a result the Spaniard now boasts a commanding lead, with leader for a day Fabio Aru (Astana) now 2’28” behind overall and Richie Porte (Team Sky) tumbling down the overall standings after another tough day.

Vasil Kiryienka won stage 14 of the Giro d’Italia, with a great ride against the clock (pic: Sirotti)

Porte’s team-mate Vasil Kiryienka ensured Sky did have something to celebrate, however, sealing their second stage win of the race after setting the standard through the time checks and at the finish line.

His time of 1.17.52 proved quickest on the day on the 59.2km course, with only three riders finishing within a minute of the Belarussian on the lumpy course to Valdobbiadene.

Astana’s Luis Leon Sanchez claimed second, 12 seconds back, while Contador was a further two seconds back.

Like Kiryienka, however, a good day for Sanchez was in stark contrast to a disappointing day for his team leader, with Aru – though expected to lose time on the day, now facing an uphill battle to regain the race lead.

Kiryienka did benefit from better conditions than the later starters, with the wind turning and heavy rain making for a difficult day on the course.

Rigoberto Uran (Etixx-QuickStep) was another unexpected loser as a result – though despite losing more time he did climb to fourth overall – but Contador made light work of the conditions to storm back into the maglia rosa.

Such was his form, as he set a negative split, the Spaniard overtook three-minute man Mikel Landa (Astana) before hitting the second time check.

He was also visibly faster than Aru on the lumpy final part of the stage – his position, typically out of the saddle and putting effectiveness over aesthetics – seemingly not as affected by his dislocated shoulder as had been feared.

Alberto Contador is back in the pink jersey and with a big overall lead too (pic: Sirotti)

And the end product for Contador is a healthy overall lead and a great chance of taking at least the first part of his ambitious target of a Giro-Tour double.

Aru is his closest challenger, but after haemorrhaging time on the day Porte – clearly affected by the late crash on stage 13 – is no longer in contention overall.

Giro d’Italia 2015: stage 13 (ITT) – result

1) Vasil Kiryienka (BLR) – Team Sky – 1.17.52hrs
2) Luis Leon Sanchez (ESP) – Astana +12”
3) Alberto Contador (ESP) – Tinkoff-Saxo +14”
4) Patrick Gretsch (GER) – Ag2r-La Mondiale +23”
5) Steven Kruijswijk (NED) – LottoNL-Jumbo +1.09
6) Tanel Kangert (EST) – Astana +1.17
7) Jurgen van den Broeck (BEL) – Lotto-Soudal +1.25
8) Fabio Felline (ITA) – Trek Factory Racing +1.26
9) Tobias Ludvigsson (SWE) – Giant-Alpecin +1.27
10) Luke Durbridge (AUS) – Orica-GreenEDGE +1.36

General classification

1) Alberto Contador (ESP) – Tinkoff-Saxo – 55.39.00hrs
2) Fabio Aru (ITA) – Astana +2.28
3) Andrey Amador (CRC) – Movistar +3.36
4) Rigoberto Uran (COL) – Etixx-QuickStep +4.14
5) Jurgen van den Broeck (BEL) – Lotto-Soudal +4.17
6) Dario Cataldo (ITA) – Astana +4.50
7) Mikel Landa (ESP) – Astana +4.55
8) Damiano Caruso (ITA) – BMC Racing +4.56
9) Roman Kreuziger (CZE) – Tinkoff-Saxo +4.57
10) Leopold Konig (CZE) – Team Sky +5.35

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