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Giro 2005 — Stage 17

May 27, 2005 – What might have been: Ivan Basso (CSC) rode a brilliant race yesterday to win stage 17. Unfortunately, having already lost a dramatic 45 minutes in a single stage earlier in the Giro when stomach ailments put him out of contention, Basso’s win didn’t hold all the meaning he might have wished for: the Giro’s GC was being decided behind him, where Gilberto Simoni (Lampre) and Jose Rujano (Selle Italia) confirmed their increasingly strong form and continued to nibble away at Paolo Savoldelli’s (Discovery) overall lead.

Basso attacked with only 20km to go in the 194km stage from Varazze to Limone Piemonte. After an early break was finally absorbed, Basso attacked with teammate Frank Schleck, Giampaolo Caruso (Liberty), Ruben Lobato (Saunier), Paolo Tiralongo (Panaria), and Dario Cioni (Liquigas). After a massive effort from teammate Schleck, Basso easily countered a bluff attack by Caruso and went on to score the solo win.

Meanwhile, Savoldelli was powerless to react when Simoni, Rujano and Juan Manuel Garate (Saunier Duval) attacked with 6km left in the stage. Simoni and Rujano eventually dropped Garate to round off the podium. Savoldelli, however, turned in a more than creditable ride, limiting the damage to 42 seconds and retaining race leadership. With the favourable time trial looming tomorrow, Savoldelli’s lead is down to 58 seconds over Simoni, who continues to inexorably chip away at the Discovery man’s lead. However, Simoni lost two minutes to Savoldelli in the 8th stage ITT — his charge may be at an end.

1. Ivan Basso (Ita) Team CSC 5.15.46 (36.862 km/h)
2. Jose’ Rujano Guillen (Ven) Selle Italia-Colombia 1.06
3. Gilberto Simoni (Ita) Lampre-Caffita
4. Wim Van Huffel (Bel) Davitamon-Lotto 1.32
5. Ivan Parra (Col) Selle Italia-Colombia 1.48
6. Juan Manuel Garate (Spa) Saunier Duval-Prodir
7. Paolo Savoldelli (Ita) Discovery Channel-Pro Cycling Team
8. Serguei Gonchar (Ukr) Domina Vacanze
9. Tadej Valjavec (Slo) Phonak Hearing Systems
10. Vladimir Karpets (Rus) Illes Balears

88. Michael Barry (Can) Discovery Channel-Pro Cycling Team 25.20

GC after stage 17:
1. Paolo Savoldelli (Ita) Discovery Channel-Pro Cycling Team 81.24.50
2. Gilberto Simoni (Ita) Lampre-Caffita 0.58
3. Jose’ Rujano Guillen (Ven) Selle Italia-Colombia 1.24
4. Danilo Di Luca (Ita) Liquigas-Bianchi 1.26
5. Juan Manuel Garate (Spa) Saunier Duval-Prodir 2.11
6. Serguei Gonchar (Ukr) Domina Vacanze 4.05
7. Pietro Caucchioli (Ita) Credit Agricole 4.26
8. Emanuele Sella (Ita) Ceramica Panaria-Navigare 6.27
9. Vladimir Karpets (Rus) Illes Balears 6.44
10. Dario David Cioni (Ita) Liquigas-Bianchi 6.47

98. Michael Barry (Can) Discovery Channel-Pro Cycling Team 2.28.33

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