Giro d'Italia: Campenaerts cobbles together stage win in Slovenia

By Sports Desk May 23, 2021

Victor Campenaerts got the better of Oscar Riesebeek to win stage 15 on what was a quiet day for the Giro d'Italia contenders.

Following a gruelling Saturday climb up Monte Zoncolan that saw leader Egan Bernal extend his advantage in the overall standings, Sunday's 147-kilometre journey from Grado to Gorizia came down to a two-man battle as the big names focused on preserving their energy.

With steady rain and a finish across cobbles adding a little extra drama to proceedings, Riesebeek made an early move in the sprint for the line.

However, his bold approach failed to pay off, Campenaerts clawing back the gap comfortably enough before slipping around his rival to triumph on Slovenian soil.

"It was just an amazing day with the team," the Belgian, who made it three wins in five days for the Qhubeka-Assos team, said in his post-stage interview.

"We don't have the guys in the team that will do the uphill finishes, and the coming days are extremely hard, so we decided to go all in today."

There had been an eventful start to the stage, with an early crash forcing the race to be neutralised. The collision forced four riders to end their involvement, too, including one high-profile casualty.

Emanuel Buchmann was sitting sixth in the general classification, two minutes and 36 seconds back, but his campaign is now over following the injuries he sustained. As well as the German, Jos van Emden, Natnael Berhane and – eventually – Ruben Guerreiro also withdrew.

Bernal had no such problems to retain possession of the maglia rosa, the Colombian coasting home with the peleton well after Campenaerts had sealed his moment of glory.


STAGE RESULT

1. Victor Campenaerts (Qhubeka Assos) 3:25:25
2. Oscar Riesebeek (Alpecin-Fenix)
3. Nikias Arndt (Team DSM) +00:07
4. Simone Consonni (Cofidis)
5. Quinten Hermans (Intermarche-Wanty-Gobert Materiaux)

CLASSIFICATION STANDINGS

General Classification

1. Egan Bernal (INEOS Grenadiers) 62:13:33
2. Simon Yates (Team BikeExchange) +1:33
3. Damiano Caruso (Bahrain Victorious) +1:51

Points Classification

1. Peter Sagan (Bora-Hansgrohe) 135
2. Davide Cimolai (Israel Start-Up Nation) 113
3. Fernando Gaviria Rendon (UAE Emirates) 110

King of the Mountains

1. Geoffrey Bouchard (AG2R Citroen Team) 96
2. Egan Bernal (INEOS Grenadiers) 57
3. Bauke Mollema (Trek-Segafredo) 53

Related items

  • Egan Bernal says he almost died following horror training crash Egan Bernal says he almost died following horror training crash

    Egan Bernal says he almost died as a result of the injuries he suffered following a horror crash in training this week.

    The INEOS Grenadiers rider was involved in a crash while training close to his hometown of Bogota in Colombia on Monday.

    Bernal, the 2019 Tour de France champion and victor of the 2021 Giro d'Italia, struck a parked bus at high speed while riding his time trial bike.

    Posting on Instagram, Bernal wrote: "Having had a 95 per cent chance of becoming a paraplegic and nearly losing my life doing what I love to do most, today I want to thank God, the Clinica Universidad de La Sabana, all the specialists for doing the impossible, my family, friends and all of you for your wishes. 

    "I'm still in the ICU waiting for more surgeries but trusting in God everything will be fine."

    Bernal underwent two operations following the incident, with the hospital confirming the surgeries were a success.

    An INEOS statement later clarified the extent of the Colombian's injuries.

    "Egan suffered a fractured vertebrae, a fractured right femur, a fractured right patella, chest trauma, a punctured lung and several fractured ribs in the crash. Doctors were able to medically pin his right leg and stabilise the vertebrae fracture in two separate surgeries," the statement read.

    A hospital statement, reported by BBC Sport, read: "Egan Bernal Gomez has continued with the expected recovery and with a favourable trend.

    "Egan continues with his rehabilitation plan, he has not shown signs of infection, he is also in good spirits.

    "Tomorrow he will have two surgeries, which are secondary procedures that are not life-threatening."

  • INEOS Grenadiers issue Bernal update as Froome sends support INEOS Grenadiers issue Bernal update as Froome sends support

    INEOS Grenadiers have released an update on Egan Bernal, revealing the full extent of his injuries.

    Bernal, the winner of the 2019 Tour de France and last year's Giro d'Italia, was involved in a crash while training close to his hometown of Bogota in Colombia on Monday.

    According to local media reports, the 25-year-old struck a parked bus while riding at a high speed.

    Bernal underwent two operations at the Clinica Universidad de La Sabana. On Tuesday, the hospital confirmed that the surgeries had been a success, but the rider remained in intensive care.

    INEOS subsequently released a further update on the Colombian.

    "Following yesterday's training accident, Egan remains in a stable condition in intensive care after two successful surgeries," the statement read.

    "Egan suffered a fractured vertebrae, a fractured right femur, a fractured right patella, chest trauma, a punctured lung and several fractured ribs in the crash. Doctors were able to medically pin his right leg and stabilise the vertebrae fracture in two separate surgeries.

    "He is now in an intensive care unit where other potential secondary injuries are being managed, as well as his body's response to the trauma.

    "The team would like to thank the medical staff at Clinica Universidad de La Sabana and everyone who has sent messages of support to Egan. All of our focus is on ensuring Egan is given the best possible care as he starts his road to recovery."

    Among those sending support to Bernal was former team-mate Chris Froome, who himself has had to overcome serious injuries to return to cycling.

    Froome, a four-time Tour de France winner, suffered a fractured right femur, a fractured elbow, and fractured ribs, after a high-speed crash into a wall while training in 2019.

    "My thoughts are with Egan and his family today," Froome wrote on Twitter.

  • Egan Bernal in intensive care following training crash Egan Bernal in intensive care following training crash

    Two-time Grand Tour winner Egan Bernal is in intensive care after undergoing surgery on his spine following a training crash.

    Bernal was training near his hometown in Bogota when the accident happened on Monday and was taken to the Clinica Universidad de La Sabana to receive treatment.

    According to local media reports, the 25-year-old struck a parked bus while riding at a high speed and suffered fractures in his right leg and kneecap as well as a collapsed lung.

    The 2019 Tour de France and 2021 Giro d'Italia winner was said to have been "stable" in a statement released by his Ineos Grenadiers team on Monday.

    Bernal has since undergone further surgery to repair dislocated fractures in his spine.

    A statement from the hospital on Tuesday confirmed the operation had "kept intact the neurological integrity and conserved the functionality of the segments involved".

    "We'll wait for his progress over the next 72 hours in the Intensive Care Unit to see the response to the treatment established for this high-energy trauma," the statement added. 

    "We have immediately begun the rehabilitation process to achieve the best possible results with our patient."

    Bernal, who has suffered with a recurring back problem over the past two years, extended his contract with Ineos Grenadiers to 2026 earlier this month.

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