Race report: Roglič exorcises mountain TT demons to take stage 20 and the pink jersey

The Slovenian overcame a mechanical to win stage 20 and take over the race lead by 14 seconds as Geraint Thomas slipped to second.

Primož Roglič (Jumbo-Visma) on his way to stage 20 time trial victory on the Monte Lussari at the 2023 Giro d’Italia. Photo: © Cor Vos 2023

Kit Nicholson
by Kit Nicholson 27.05.2023 Photography by
Cor Vos
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In an incredibly dramatic final GC day, Primož Roglič (Jumbo-Visma) overcame a near-catastrophic mechanical to not only win stage 20, but snatch the Giro d’Italia lead by 14 seconds over incumbent pink jersey Geraint Thomas (Ineos Grenadiers).

Brief results:

  1. Primož Roglič (Jumbo-Visma)
  2. Geraint Thomas (Ineos Grenadiers) +40s
  3. João Almeida (UAE Emirates) +42s
  4. Damiano Caruso (Bahrain Victorious) +55s
  5. Thibaut Pinot (Groupama-FDJ) +59s

New (final) GC:

  1. Primož Roglič (Jumbo-Visma)
  2. Geraint Thomas (Ineos Grenadiers) +14s
  3. João Almeida (UAE Emirates) +1:15
  4. Damiano Caruso (Bahrain Victorious) +4:40
  5. Thibaut Pinot (Groupama-FDJ) +5:43

Heart-stopping moment for Jumbo-Visma:

The most dramatic moment of the day, and characteristic of one of the least lucky riders in the peloton, elicited a classic reaction from his collected teammates. It instantly drew comparison to similar scenes in 2020 when Roglič lost the Tour de France on the penultimate day’s mountain TT.

Wout van Aert and Tom Dumoulin, eat your hearts out.


Crowd appreciation moment:

Maybe the happiest man in Italy right now, Jonathan Milan is set to wrap up the ciclamino jersey of points classification leader in his debut grand tour.

Next stage:

The 125 riders left of the Giro peloton will now travel to Rome for the 21st and final stage of the Giro, a 126km semi-processional stage that is likely to finish in a bunch gallop after six urban circuits. Before the surviving sprinters have their last chance at stage glory though, Derek Gee (Israel-Premier Tech) is sure to throw himself into the breakaway fray once more – he can’t help himself. Then one last finish line and Primož Roglič will be crowned champion of the 2023 Giro d’Italia.

Quote of the day:

Sepp Kuss spent a little time in the hot seat after chipping two seconds off Brandon McNulty’s time, but the stress was reserved for the last ten minutes of the stage, the agony and ecstasy of watching his teammate snatch victory from the jaws of defeat:

“Too many emotions – not only finishing physically empty, then sitting down and watching everything unfold on the climb. But yeah, it’s not Primož without overcoming some adversity like he had there in the end. But I think that gave him even more power. 

“It’s just a Cinderella story, you know? With all the Slovenian fans here. It’s just beautiful for Primož, for the team, for everybody. Just beyond words.”

Social media review:

The call went out overnight: Slovenians unite!

Mark Cavendish bids a lonely ciao to his last Giro d’Italia time trial…

We’re still awaiting the rankings in the mid-stage bike change competition – though Ineos probably won’t win…

There was a definite last-day-of-term vibe, especially earlier in the afternoon as those simply looking forward to pizza in Rome endured enjoyed the hill climb.

The ecstasy and relief of victory…

Reading list:

The RideLondon Classique is ongoing in the UK. DSM’s Charlotte Kool took stage 1 as Canyon-SRAM fell at the last hurdle, but the German outfit bounced back on the second stage to deliver Chloe Dygert to a first WorldTour win of the season for both the rider and the team.

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