After a fierce battle to make the breakaway that saw Francisco Ventoso trying to force a move, a group of 12 riders was able to go clear over the top of the first climb, the Cima Campo, after 27 kilometers of racing.
However, with most of the General Classification contenders sending a teammate up the road, the gap was kept under control with team tactics unsurprisingly coming into play later in the day.
The main bunch quickly reduced in size but CCC Team still had Amaro Antunes, Francisco Ventoso and Łukasz Owsian in the 50-rider group, which at this point was just three minutes up the road with 136.5 kilometers still to go.
As the battle for the Maglia Rosa intensified on the Passo Manghen, the group exploded once more with de la Parte eventually losing contact with the race favorites while, up ahead, the breakaway was also fracturing.
There were groups of riders spread out all along the road by the time the race reached the final category one climb up to the finish line and on the 6.9-kilometer long ascent, which had an average gradient of 7.3%, de la Parte continued to set his own tempo.
In the end, the Maglia Rosa caught the remnants of the breakaway with victory going to Pello Bilbao (Astana Pro Team) and de la Parte finishing in the top thirty after a long and hard day of climbing before tomorrow’s final time trial.
Quotes From the Finish Line
Víctor de la Parte:
“We knew coming into today’s race that it was going to be a really hard stage and it proved us right. The GC team started to push right from the very start really and I think it was a really hard day for everyone. I was able to stick with the race leaders for as long as I could but eventually I dropped off the back and started to ride my own pace, but it still wasn’t easy. I felt better on the final climb than I did at the start of the day so I think overall, I can be happy with my condition at the end of this Giro.”
Stage 20: Feltre > Croce d’Cune-Monte Avena (194km)
Top 3: 1. Pello Bilbao (Astana Pro Team) 2. Mikel Landa (Movistar) 3. Guilio Ciccone (Trek – Segafredo)
CCC Team Top 3: 30. Víctor de la Parte 63. Amaro Antunes 74. Francisco Ventoso