Giro d'Italia

Andrey Amador climbs to win on first major mountain stage at 2012 Giro; Hesjedal back in pink

Andrey Amador stayed out front for over 130 kilometers on Giro's first major climbing day, holds off GC chase group for the win

Andrey Amador of Team Movistar went with the break today at 70km into the race, and managed to stay away to take the mountaintop finish today on stage 14 of the Giro d’Italia.

He becomes the first Costa Rican to ever win a grand tour stage.

“I am very happy to win this stage. This is my third breakaway and I knew it would be very difficult,” he said. “I dedicate this to my girlfriend and mother – I am very happy to win this stage.”

Ryder Hesjedal reclaimed the overall lead when he attacked the other main GC contenders near the final summit of the 206km route from Cherasco to Cervinia. With about 3k to go, he made his move from the group – including Ivan Basso (Liquigas-Cannondale), Joquim Rodríguez (Katusha), and Michele Scarponi (Lampre-ISD) – who were all chasing the three leaders.

He held them off to the line, finishing solo in fourth, 20 seconds behind the winner, but more importantly gaining 26 critical seconds on his rivals.

“I am just going day by day. Today was hard. The legs were good so I thought I’d give it a go,” he said. “What can I say? It worked out well – I got the jersey back, so that’s good. I am happy.

“Lampre set a very strong tempo,” he added. “They took control of the stage. Liquigas is also very strong. Basso looks strong. They have won the race before.”

Amador left the day’s main break behind with a harrowing decent off the Col de Joux just before the last climb. He was caught again by Jan Barta (NetApp) and Alessandro De Marchi (Androni-Giocatolli) on the final climb to Cervinia, but took the final sprint to the line. Barta finished second in the same time and De Marchi took third, two seconds back.

Brief Results

Stage 14
1 Andrey AMADOR, Movistar, in 5:33:36
2 Jan BARTA, NetApp, s.t.
3 Alessandro DE MARCHI, Androni-Giocatolli +2
4 Ryder HESJEDAL, Garmin-Barracuda +20
5 Paolo TIRALONGO, Astana +46

General Classification after stage 14
1 Ryder HESJEDAL, Garmin-Barracuda, in 59:55:28
2 Joaquim RODRÍGUEZ, Katusha +9
3 Paolo TIRALONGO, Astana +41
4 Sandy CASAR, FDJ-BigMat +1:05
5 Ivan BASSO, Liquigas-Cannondale +1:06

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