Ok, so I know Stage 5 was yesterday and Stage 6 is almost over... but yesterday was a tad busy. (Dang job keeps getting in the way.)
So anyway, Robert Forster of Gerolsteiner (still one of my favorite team kits in the peloton every year) wins the chaotic sprint finish ahead of Thor Husovd and a quick moving Petacchi. Looks like Thor isn't too sore anymore and is ready to roar... sorry. Seriously though, Hushovd is one of the best sprinters in the world at the end of a 3 week race, so he is looking good to start getting some wins. Danilo Napolitano was 4th and McEwen was 5th. Forster capitalized on a twisty and technical finish to pop out of the front and reach the line first to claim his 2nd ever Giro stage win (winning in Milan last year). The other top sprinters pissed and moaned about the finish being too technical and twisty, but you know what... suck it up sunshine! A) You're getting paid to ride a bike and be adored by millions of fans along the roads of Italy and 2) you should know how to ride a bike at that level. Yes it's dangerous and it is nerve-wracking... but shut up and race your damn bike. Not all roads are straight!
(I'm done now.)
Danilo DiLuca retained his pink jersey, but now says he's ready to let it sit on somebody else's shoulders for a while so his team can relax a little and wait for the critical days ahead. Personally , I think one of the Tinkoff riders should get the jersey for a few days! I know I can't be alone in loving these guys. Every single day, a Tinkoff rider is off the front and trying to get as much time as possible in front of the cameras. Yes, I know they haven't won yet and they haven't really been that close, but they are out there trying each day... and really trying too. They don't stop until they are caught. Oleg Tinkov has assembled a team with true heart and grit. As a wild card team, they have more than proven their worth in this Giro. So I hope one of their riders gets that stage win soon and maybe even grabs the Maglia Rosa for a day or more. Courage like that deserves reward.
Anyway, today's stage- which I have not been following this morning so I can remain unbiased- looks painful. The Monte Terminillo is a killer. Owie, owie, owie... and then two more shorter but hurty climbs appear before the finish. Today could present a shake-up in the GC. Expect guys who were high placed due to the opening time trial to slide way back down. Sprinters? Sleeping at the back of the bus trying to rest their legs until things get a bit flatter. I would expect DiLuca to either blow this thing apart today or simply ride on the ankles of his main rivals like Cunego and Simoni. Stefano Garzelli might even be one to watch- he's down far enough (17th) that he might be allowed to get a little time off the front and he's certainly a great climber. Another "maybe" is Spanish once-great phenom Iban Mayo. He's on Saunier-Duval with Simoni and is one of the greatest climbers in the race (when he's on form), so he might sneak away too, since he's down in 26th.
The stage should be over in a few hours, so we'll see how good a guesser I actually am.