Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : May 20th 2013 Contents A49
Monday, May 20, 2013 www.guardian.co.tt Guardian
COL DU GALIBIER --- A superb solo
ride up the grueling Col du Galibier
enbaled Giovanni Visconti to win a
weather-affected 15th stage of the Giro
d'Italia yesterday, while favourite Vin-
cenzo Nibali retained the overall lead.
Atrocious weather conditions once
again altered the race course and heavy
snow fell at the finish as Visconti won
in a time of 4 hours, 40 minutes, 52
seconds, beating Carlos Betancur and
Przemyslaw Niemiec by 42 seconds.
Nibali, who finished third and second
in his two previous Giros, maintained
his lead of 1:26 over Cadel Evans.
Saturday's leg was changed because
of avalanche threats and yesterday's
leg was also affected by the sub-zero
temperatures, with the final 4.25 kilo-
metres (4.2 miles) up the famous Gal-
The stage instead finished at the
monument to deceased Italian cyclist
Marco Pantani, whose extraordinary
climb up the Galibier ultimately enabled
him to win the 1998 Tour de France.
It was a superb ride from Visconti,
who was part of an early move before
dropping his fellow breakaway riders
on the Col du Telegraphe.
"Maybe Marco Pantani gave me a
helping hand to win this stage, seeing
as we were born on the same day," a
tearful Visconti said. "I'm coming off
the back of a very difficult year and a
half. I've been chasing a day like today
Visconti, a three-time Italian cycling
champion, was banned for three
months and fined $13,000 at the end
of last year for seeing banned physician
His ban was backdated to October
8 but expired on January 7, meaning
he didn't miss any races.
The race was neutralized on the cat-
egory-1 climb up the Col du Mont Cenis
and across into France, in what appeared
to be a demonstration of solidarity
among riders. Everyone rode at the
same pace through the snow-filled
Pieter Weening broke clear on the
descent and built a lead of about three
minutes on the peloton, with a chasing
group of six riders attempting to bridge
The Dutchman was caught by the
chasers and they had an advantage of
more than six minutes in approaching
the Telegraphe, although the gap had
dropped to little more than two minutes
at the start of the category-2 climb.
Visconti made his move more than
20 kilometers (12.5 miles) from the finish
and built a lead of nearly two minutes.
That advantage was eroded by Ween-
ing, Stefano Pirazzi and Matteo Rabot-
tini as Visconti looked to be struggling
at the start of the Galibier. But the 30-
year-old Italian dug deep and stretched
his lead again.
Visconti held on in the final kilometer
--- which had a gradient of 11 percent
--- to claim a first Grand Tour stage
Monday is a rest day, which will be
welcomed after two tough mountain
stages in awful conditions.
The Giro starts again tomorrow with
a hilly 238-kilometer (148-mile) route
from Valloire, France, to Ivrea.
The race ends May 26 in Brescia.
made amends for last year's loss
in the final to capture the World
Match Play Championship title
in Bulgaria yesterday, defeating
Thongchai Jaidee 2 and 1 on the
Thracian Cliffs course.
The 2010 US Open champion
fought back from 2 down after four
holes and only edged in front of
his Thai opponent on the 14th hole
before securing victory at the 17th.
It is McDowell's second win in
three events. He also captured the
RBC Heritage on the PGA Tour
earlier this month at Hilton Head
in South Carolina.
"It's been a nice day and nice
to receive a great trophy," McDowell
said. "We have talked all week
about the prestige of this event
and how many great champions
have won this tournament, and
it's just nice to add my name to
that list of legends."
McDowell earned 800,000 euros
to move top of the European Tour
money list. He will also rise one
place to No. 7 on the world rank-
The Northern Irishman
advanced to the final by defeating
Branden Grace of South Africa 3
and 2 in the semifinals. He needed
the the qualities that allowed him
to play on two Ryder Cup-winning
Having fought back to win No
7, McDowell appeared to feel
Thongchai was tiring and made
his move to win Nos 12, 14 and
Visconti in solo
victory on snowy
15th Giro stage
McDowell wins World Match Play
Italy's Giovanni Visconti sprays sparkling wine after winning the 15th stage of
the Giro d'Italia, Tour of Italy cycling race, from Cesana to Col Du Galbier, Italy,
yesterday. A superb solo ride up the grueling Col du Galibier gave Giovanni
Visconti the victory in a weather-affected 15th stage of the Giro d'Italia, while
favorite Vincenzo Nibali retained the overall lead. AP PHOTO
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