Boasson Hagen comes of age in a Grand Tour, no GC changes
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Friday, May 15, 2009

Boasson Hagen comes of age in a Grand Tour, no GC changes

by Steve Jones at 2:02 PM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Giro d'Italia, Race Reports and Results

Edvald Boasson Hagen (Columbia - High Road) repeated his explosive sprint of yesterday's stage, but this time it earned him victory in stage seven of the Giro d'Italia, a stage that took the race from Innsbruk to Chiavenna over 240km. Oddly enough, the young Norweigian, who will turn 22-years-old this Sunday, finished off the winning move that was initiated by the oldest rider in the race Alessandro Bertolini (Serramenti Pvc Diquigiovanni). Second place went to the expected winner, sprinter Robbie Hunter (Barloworld) and third went to Pavel Brutt (Katusha).

Boasson Hagen continues to develop as a rider on his Columbia - High Road team.  He won Gent-Wevelgem earlier this season, which was the young man's first semi-classic win.  With his consistent finishes and savvy shown in the past two stage finishes, the Norwegian's possibilities for the future are incredible.

The racing began when four riders featured in a break in the first half of the race that included Mauro Facci (Quick-Step), Bartosz Huzarski (ISD), Vladimir Isaichev (Xacobeo Galicia), and Serguei Klimov (Katusha). The four riders built their lead up to over four minutes as the peloton plodded along through the unfavorable weather conditions of the day.

The team of the Magila Rosa kept the gap at a reasonable size until Barloworld, Garmin, and Silence-Lotto picked up the pace to catch the escapees just before the Passo Maloja, the big climb for the day.

The winning move began when Bertolini took advantage of the nasty weather on the decent and attacked taking over a minute on the peloton in short order- a similar move won him a stage in the race just one year ago.

At the base of the mountain the Italian found help in the form of Pavel Brutt, Robbie Hunter, Davide Vigano (Fuji-Servetto), and eventual stage winner Edvald Boasson Hagen, all throwing caution to the wind in the foggy descent for a chance at winning the stage.

With just over a kilometer left and more than 30 seconds in hand, the break knew their efforts had paid off, but only one would go home with a stage win. Bertolini made a jump for the line knowing he couldn't beat the likes of Hunter and Boasson Hagen, but it wasn't enough as the powerful Russian Brutt pulled him back into the fold. The hesitation from the Italian being caught was the perfect time for Boasson Hagen to make his bid, and that he did taking the others by surprise and sailing into the line for a well deserved win.

Tour of Italy results in Friday's seventh stage from Innsbruck in Austria to Chiavenna:

1. Edvald Boasson Hagen (NOR/THR) 5hr 56min 53sec.
2. Robert Hunter (RSA/BAR) à 0:00.
3. Pavel Brutt (RUS/KAT) 0:00.
4. Davide Vigano (ITA/FUJ) 0:00.
5. Alessandro Bertolini (ITA/SDA) 0:00.
6. Andriy Grivko (UKR/ISD) 0:31.
7. Matthew Goss (AUS/SAX) 0:40.
8. Allan Davis (AUS/QST) 0:40.
9. Robert Förster (GER/MRM) 0:40.
10. Ben Swift (ENG/KAT) 0:40.
11. Mark Cavendish (IDM/THR) 0:40.
12. Francesco Gavazzi (ITA/LAM) 0:40.
13. Tyler Farrar (USA/GRM) 0:40.
14. Sébastien Hinault (FRA/ALM) 0:40.
15. Alessandro Petacchi (ITA/LPR) 0:40.

General Classification:

1. Danilo Di Luca (ITA/LPR) 28h08:48.
2. Thomas Lövkvist (SWE/THR) at 0:05.
3. Michael Rogers (AUS/THR) 0:36.
4. Levi Leipheimer (USA/AST) 0:43.
5. Denis Menchov (RUS/RAB) 0:50.
6. Ivan Basso (ITA/LIQ) 1:06.
7. Carlos Sastre (ESP/CTT) 1:16.
8. Chris Horner (USA/AST) 1:17.
9. Franco Pellizotti (ITA/LIQ) 1:27.
10. David Arroyo (ESP/GCE) 1:41.
11. Gilberto Simoni (ITA/SDA) 2:01.
12. Yaroslav Popovych (UKR/AST) 2:30.
13. Tadej Valjavec (SLO/ALM) 2:36.
14. Laurens ten Dam (NED/RAB) 2:41.
15. Kevin Seeldraeyers (BEL/QST) 2:49.


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