to VeloNews.com's Live Updates from the second stage of the 2008 Giro d'Italia, a 207km race from Cefalu to Agrigente. This stage features two climbs, the Category 2 Gatteri, at 26km and then the Cat. 3 Polizzello at 112km. This is not a simple and easy flat sprinters' stage typical of the early days in the grand tours. This is the sort of stage that may favor a strong all-arounder, like Paolo Bettini ...
Christian Vande Velde stepped off the Slipstream-Chipotle team bus Sunday morning along the beach at Cerfalù with a big smile on his face.
Proudly decked out in the maglia rosa, Vande Velde was clearly enjoying his moment as the first American since Andy Hampsten won the 1988 Giro to wear the Giro’s leader’s jersey.
“We hope today goes just like yesterday, but we know it’s a complicated stage,” Vande Velde said. “To win yesterday’s stage was our big goal, everything else is just icing on the cake at this point.”
VeloNews staff and wire reports
David Zabriskie’s 2008 Giro d’Italia ended Sunday when he was caught at a pileup with about 55km to go in the 207km second stage from Cerfalù to Agrigento.
Zabriskie, 29, went down with several other riders as the peloton approached a railroad crossing.
Zabriskie, who started the day second overall, was knocked off his bike and was unable to rejoin the pack. Doctors immediately attended to the reigning U.S. time trial champion and transported him to a local hospital.
Riccardo Riccò (Saunier Duval-Scott) uncorked a tremendous sprint in the final 100 meters to win Sunday’s exciting 207km second stage, but Franco Pellizotti (Liquigas) snuck into fourth to short circuit Christian Vande Velde’s run in the maglia rosa by just one second.
I have been in Sicily since Wednesday and have been watching the buildup in excitement and preparation among the teams, both riders and staff members. The atmosphere has been light and was getting less so as the race draws closer.
And here also is the first of many cool Giro bikes you will see here in the coming days and weeks.