Wiggle High5 Pro Cycling’s Elisa Longo Borghini has consolidated her second place in the 2017 Giro d’Italia Femminile - Giro Rosa - general classification after a second third place finish of the race so far, in the brutal stage five time trial in Sant'Elpidio a Mare. The 12.7km stage’s course featured two tough climbs, with the second the extremely steep Muro di Cocciari - whose slopes sometimes reach 30% - coming just before the finish.
The stage was won by Annemiek van Vleuten (Orica-Scott) in a time of 25 minutes, 29 seconds, ahead of overall race leader Anna van der Breggen (Boels-Dolmans). Longo Borghini was third, just one minute and 15 seconds behind van Vleuten, to repeat the podium placings of stage two.
“The course was a very tough one,” Longo Borghini said afterward. “The climbs were very hard, and the final one was up to 30% which hurt a lot!”
Van Vleuten’s victory saw the Netherlands Time Trial Champion climb back into the top three, after having lost almost two minutes on stage four. Longo Borghini’s performance, however, means that the Italian Time Trial Champion holds on to her second place, and now trails van der Breggen by just one minute at the halfway stage of the Giro.
It also means that Longo Borghini’s nearest challenger in the Blue Jersey classification for the Best Italian Rider is now almost eight minutes behind her.
“I'm satisfied with my third place on the stage today. I gave it everything and couldn’t have gone any quicker. I’m also very happy with the place I have on GC, but as I have said, the Giro is a very long race and anything can happen in the next days.”
Longo Borghini’s third place is the Italian Champion’s second of the Giro Rosa so far and, with Belgian Champion Jolien D’hoore’s victory on stage four, the latest excellent result for Wiggle High5 Pro Cycling in the race. With the results has also come some excellent teamwork, with spirits in the black and orange camp very high.
“There is excellent morale in the team at the moment,” Longo Borghini confirmed. “After the performance in the stage yesterday, and Jolien’s win, it looks really confident and strong!”
Photo Credit: Anton Vos
1. Annemiek van Vleuten (Orica-Scott)
2. Anna van der Breggen (Boels-Dolmans)
3. Elisa Longo Borghini (Wiggle High5 Pro Cycling)
Fourth is no good enough