PESCARA, Italy, May 10, 2013 (AFP) – Tour de France champion Bradley
Wiggins lost valuable time after falling on a treacherously wet hairpin bend
in the seventh stage of the Tour of Italy won by Australian Adam Hansen on
After hitting the deck close to home as the rain came down Wiggins picked
himself up to trail in 55th, two-and-a-half minutes behind Hansen, to slip to
23rd in the overall standings, 1min 32sec behind new leader Benat Intxausti.
Wiggins, the Olympic time trial gold medalist, will be hoping to make up
for time lost on this tricky undulating 177km run from San Silvo to Pescara in
Saturday’s time trial.
Team Sky principal Dave Brailsford reported the British star none the worse
for his tumble.
“Bradley’s fine. There’s no physical injury,” he reported.
“Ultimately when you have difficult conditions like these and hard racing
this type of thing can happen. It’s the Giro.
“You can have good days and bad days and you have to wait until the end to
tot them all up and see where you are.
“It’s a setback, but Brad’s still very much in the hunt. We’ve now got to
take each day as it comes, focus on fully recovering tonight and hitting the
time trial hard tomorrow. We’ll see where we are tomorrow night and take stock
of the situation then.”
In the overall standings, pink jersey holder Intxausti now leads by five
seconds from Vincenzo Nibali, who like Wiggins also fell, with last year’s
Giro winner, Canadian Ryder Hesjedal, eight seconds back in third.
Hansen, who turns 32 on Saturday, was clinching his first stage victory on
a major tour since he turned professional in 2007.
“It was really tough but I had an incredible feeling crossing the line,” he
“I never thought I’d experience such a day as this.
“I’ve registered the best victory of my career, what a magnificent present
to myself 24 hours before my birthday.”
Hansen, riding for the Lotto team, took command after forming part of a
five-strong breakaway group that hit the front early on in the day’s run.
The Aussie and Emanuele Sella forged clear of the frontrunners near the
Chieti climb 35km from the finish, with Hansen dropping the Italian to come
He took the stage with a 1:07 gap back to a group led by Italian Enrico
Battaglin with another home hope, Danilo Di Luca, in third. Intxausti came in
14th at 1:07.
Saturday’s eighth stage is a 54.8km race against the clock between Gabbice
Mare and Saltara, with Wiggins desperate to make inroads after a trying first
Results from the seventh stage of the
Giro d’Italia, a 177km run from Marina di San Salvo to Pescara on Friday:
1. Adam Hansen (AUS/LTB) 4hr 35min 49sec, 2. Enrico Battaglin (ITA/BAR) at
1:07, 3. Danilo Di Luca (ITA/VIN) 1:07, 4. Mauro Santambrogio (ITA/VIN) 1:07,
5. Damiano Caruso (ITA/CAN) 1:07, 6. Cadel Evans (AUS/BMC) 1:07, 7. Stefano
Pirazzi (ITA/BAR) 1:07, 8. Arnold Jeannesson (FRA/FDJ) 1:07, 9. Pieter Weening
(NED/ORI) 1:07, 10. Ryder Hesjedal (CAN/GRM) 1:07.
14. Benat Intxausti (ESP/MOV) 1:07, 22. Michele Scarponi (ITA/LAM) 1:07,
23. Vincenzo Nibali (ITA/AST) 1:07, 54. Luca Paolini (ITA/KAT) 2:31, 55.
Bradley Wiggins (GBR/SKY) 2:31.
1. Benat Intxausti (ESP/MOV) 28hr 30min 04sec, 2. Vincenzo Nibali (ITA/AST)
at 05, 3. Ryder Hesjedal (CAN/GRM) 08, 4. Giampaolo Caruso (ITA/KAT) 10, 5.
Mauro Santambrogio (ITA/VIN) 13, 6. Cadel Evans (AUS/BMC) 16, 7. Robert Gesink
(NED/BLA) 19, 8. Ivan Santaromita (ITA/BMC) 28, 9. Pieter Weening (NED/ORI)
29, 10. Robert Kiserlovski (CRO/RSH) 34.
23. Bradley Wiggins (GBR/SKY) 1:32