Team Sunweb rider Tom Dumoulin put in a strong effort in Tuesday’s critical time trial stage of the Giro d’Italia, finishing third on the day and gaining more than a minute on general classification leader Simon Yates. The Dutchman retained his second-place GC standing, and is now less than a minute behind Yates with five stages left before this weekend’s finish in Rome.
“I was aiming for the win or to take a lot of time back on Yates, which didn’t work out completely,” Dumoulin said. “Yates was incredible again and I couldn’t accelerate more during the TT. I gave my all and have to be satisfied with the result.”
Riding his Trinity Advanced Pro TT bike and wearing the Rivet TT helmet, Dumoulin attacked the 34km course, intent on gaining valuable seconds in the GC. In the end, he finished 22 seconds behind stage winner Rohan Dennis, and 1:15 ahead of Yates.
The current time trial world champion also rode with a prototype rear disc wheel. Several key riders from Team Sunweb have been testing and racing next-generation WheelSystems from Giant. Seeking every possible advantage in the critical time trial stage, Dumoulin chose to race with the rear wheel, which is currently labeled #overachieve.
“It’s still a long way to Rome, and being less than one minute to pink doesn’t rule me out of anything,” Dumoulin said. “I managed to further distance the other guys in the overall, which is also a good thing for me. We’ll continue to fight and see where the week takes us.”
Dumoulin’s teammate Chad Haga also showed his strength in the time trial. The American finished ninth on the day.
“Next to Tom, Chad did an amazing TT being our second Team Sunweb rider finishing in the top-10 today,” said Team Sunweb coach Marc Reef. “We will continue to fight until Rome and then we’ll see what our position will be.”
The final days of the 101st Giro d’Italia are sure to produce drama, with three difficult stages in the Alps to come. Thursday’s Stage 18 features a Category 1 climb to the summit finish at Pratonevoso, and Friday’s Stage 19 to Bardonecchia is a brutal day with four mountain passes including the Colle delle Finestre, the Cima Coppi (the highest point of this year’s Giro), the Sestriere, and an extremely steep climb to the finish at Jaffereau. The second-to-last stage covers three Category 1 climbs over 214km, before Sunday’s final stage in Rome.