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The 2006 Giro d'Italia, the 89th running
of the race, was held from 6 May to 28 May 2006. It covered
3,526 kilometres (2,191 mi) beginning in the Belgian mining town of Seraing and ending in Milan. Italian riders such as Ivan Basso, Damiano Cunego,
and defending champion Paolo Savoldelli vied to win their
national Grand Tour.
The Giro was won by Ivan Basso riding for Team CSC in dominant
fashion. Basso won three individual stages, as well as the team time
trial, along with his fellow CSC riders. Basso won by more than
9 minutes over the next best rider, the largest margin of victory
in a Grand Tour in the
last three years.
The race introduced a team time trial stage upon its arrival
in Italy. This discipline had
been absent from the Giro since edition 1989.
It also included 56.2 km (34.9 mi) of individual time
trials, distributed between the prologue and the long time trial at
It also featured famous climbs, such as the steep Mortirolo and the
Monte Bondone. The Plan de Corones was planned
to be climbed for the first time, however, bad weather prevented
the unpaved climb from being used. It instead saw its debut in the
Giro d'Italia in 2008.
- 1 Teams and cyclists
- 2 Stages
- 2.1 Stage 1,
06-05-2006: Seraing, 6.2 km. (ITT)
2.2 Stage 2,
07-05-2006: Mons–Charleroi, 197 km.
- 2.3 Stage 3,
08-05-2006: Perwez–Namur, 202 km
2.4 Stage 4,
09-05-2006: Wanze–Hotton, 193 km.
10-05-2006: Rest Day
2.6 Stage 5,
11-05-2006: Piacenza–Cremona, 35 km. (TTT)
2.7 Stage 6,
12-05-2006: Busseto–Forlì, 227 km.
2.8 Stage 7,
13-05-2006: Cesena–Saltara, 236 km.
2.9 Stage 8,
14-05-2006: Civitanova Marche–Maielletta,
2.10 Stage 9,
15-05-2006: Francavilla al Mare–Termoli,
2.11 Stage 10,
16-05-2006: Termoli–Peschici, 187 km.
17-05-2006: Rest Day
- 2.13 Stage 11,
18-05-2006: Pontedera, 50 km. (ITT)
2.14 Stage 12,
19-05-2006: Livorno–Sestri Levante, 171 km.
2.15 Stage 13,
20-05-2006: Alessandria–La Thuile, 218 km.
2.16 Stage 14,
21-05-2006: Aosta–Domodossola, 223 km.
2.17 Stage 15,
22-05-2006: Mergozzo–Brescia, 189 km.
2.18 Stage 16,
23-05-2006: Rovato–Monte Bondone, 173 km.
2.19 Stage 17,
24-05-2006: Termeno/Tramin - Furkelpass,
2.20 Stage 18,
25-05-2006: Sillian–Gemona del Friuli, 210 km.
2.21 Stage 19,
26-05-2006: Pordenone–Passo San Pellegrino,
2.22 Stage 20,
27-05-2006: Trento–Aprica, 211 km.
2.23 Stage 21,
28-05-2006: Madonna del Ghisallo–Milan,
- 3 Final standings
- 4 Retirements
- 5 Significance of
the Belgian opening
- 6 References
- 7 External links
Except in the individual and team time
trial, the first three riders in every stage receive a time
bonus of 20 seconds, 12 seconds, and 8 seconds respectively.
1, 06-05-2006: Seraing,
6.2 km. (ITT)
Francisco Pérez from Caisse
d'Epargne-Illes Balears set the first strong time at the finish
of the tough first stage of the Giro d'Italia, a time which stood
quite a long time until it was bettered by Serhiy Honchar by
one second. After Bradley McGee had set a very good time
later on, it seemed as if the 2004 Giro d'Italia prologue winner
would repeat his victory, but defending champion Paolo
Savoldelli bested the Australian's time both at the intermediate
and finish time checks.
Favourites such as Ivan
Di Luca, and Damiano Cunego chose not to gamble on
the risky descent and lose most of their time deficit in the second
half of the course.
2, 07-05-2006: Mons–Charleroi,
Being a flat stage, this stage was always destined to be a
shoot-out between Robbie McEwen and Alessandro Petacchi. After
23 km, a breakaway of four left the peloton and remained ahead in the race for the
next 150 km. However, Team Milram controlled the peloton and
pulled back the break with only 17 km to go. This allowed Team
Milram to give Petacchi the perfect lead-out. However, with 200 m
to go, Olaf
Pollack jumped out into first place, allowing Robbie McEwen to
get on his wheel and take the stage.
3, 08-05-2006: Perwez–Namur,
German Stefan Schumacher became the second
man in Gerolsteiner's history to wear the Maglia
rosa (after Olaf Pollack in 2004) by winning the third
stage in Belgium and surpassing Paolo Savoldelli, thanks to time
Step-Innergetic led the peloton and chased down a breakaway of
four. During the chase, Alessandro Petacchi fell and
fractured his kneecap, prompting his withdrawal the next
Bettini seemed to be the favourite to win, but was blocked by a
scooter of the organisation just when Schumacher attacked and could
not catch up to the German,
who beat José Luis Rubiera to the line.
4, 09-05-2006: Wanze–Hotton, 193 km.
Day four was a flat stage, with a few hills around the middle of
the 200 km course, however an early breakaway was caught in
the last 50 kilometers and the peloton joined together for a bunch
sprint. The long flat drag into the finish line would have suited a
power sprinter like Alessandro Petacchi, however due to
his injury the previous day he did not start.
On the sprint itself, T-Mobile's Olaf Pollack attacked
first, but couldn't sustain his pace, and with only a few hundred
meters to go, Robbie
McEwen attacked, and despite being countered by Paolo Bettini,
McEwen won by half of a bike length.
Stage 5, 11-05-2006: Piacenza–Cremona, 35 km. (TTT)
Honchar (T-Mobile Team) took the Maglia
Rosa after the stage.
Stage 6, 12-05-2006: Busseto–Forlì, 227 km.
(T-Mobile Team) took the Maglia
Rosa after the stage.
7, 13-05-2006: Cesena–Saltara,
For the second time, Serhiy Honchar (T-Mobile Team) took
the Maglia Rosa after the stage.
Stage 8 featured the first mountain finish of this year's Giro,
and following a breakaway being caught on the last climb, a pack of
favorites had assembled on the final climb. However, Jan Ullrich and
provisional leader Serhiy Honchar were quickly dropped from
the lead group, and following the pace setting by Ivan Basso's teammate Carlos Sastre
favorites like Paolo Savoldelli were also dropped
from the lead group.
Cunego launched an attack with less than 5 km to go, and
Basso was the only one who could react, quickly catching up to
Cunego and riding past him. Basso stayed ahead and gained time on
all the other favorites and won the stage. Cunego outsprinted Phonak's Jose Gutierrez for second place. Cunego was
the only pre-tour favorite who was able to limit the time loss to
Ivan Basso (another favorite) to less that a minute. Gilberto
Di Luca, Paolo Savoldelli and Serhiy Honchar lost 77, 92, 140
and 155 seconds respectively.
Stage 10, 16-05-2006: Termoli–Peschici, 187 km.
A long breakaway consisting of 19 riders broke away after
52 km of the stage, and managed to stay away from the peloton despite hard work by
the Lampre-Fondital team in trying to reel in
the breakaway. Franco Pellizotti was the best placed rider in the
General Classement out of the breakaway riders, and had an
excellent day, as the peloton containing all the favorites finished
3 minutes and 23 seconds down on him, which vaulted Pellizotti from
23rd overall into 4th place provisionally.
11, 18-05-2006: Pontedera, 50 km. (ITT)
Stage 15, 22-05-2006: Mergozzo–Brescia, 189 km.
With his team leader Ivan Basso behind them, Jens Voigt couldn't
contribute to the breakaway with Juan Manual Gárate. In the closing
meters, Voigt patted Gárate on the back and let him take the win.
Voigt later said "I was always sitting on the back of the attack,
but I couldn't win today because I didn't work at all. You can only
win if you are the strongest and it wouldn't have been right if I
20, 27-05-2006: Trento–Aprica, 211 km.
Classification (Maglia Blu)
Trofeo Fast Team
110 Gazzetta (Intergiro): Paolo Bettini, Quick Step-Innergetic
Most combative: Paolo Bettini, Quick Step-Innergetic
classification: Ivan Basso, Team CSC
- 4 points for stage winner, 2 for 2nd and 1 for 3rd.
Trofeo Fuga Piaggio: Christophe
- Most kilometres in a breakaway containing less than 10
Trofeo Super Team: Phonak
- 20 points for stage winner, 19 for 2nd etc., 20th gets 1
Fair Play: Ceramica
- 198 riders started the race.
- 150 riders completed the race.
- 48 riders retired.
- Only Crédit Agricole, Lampre-Fondital and Team CSC finished with
- The most retirements were seen in Stage 7 (7 riders from 6
teams) and Stage 18 (6 riders from 6 teams).
Significance of the
The 2006 Giro opens, and has its first 4 stages in the
South-East of Belgium in the Wallonia region. The Giro organisers chose to
locate the opening in this region as a homage to the thousands of
Italians who moved to the region following the end of World War II in order
to find jobs in the coal mines of the area. It is estimated that as
many as 300'000 Belgians of Italian origin live in this area. The
2006 Giro will commemorate the deaths of 136 Italian miners who
died in the 1956 Bois du
Cazier mine disaster.
Tim Maloney, After Belgian antipasto, 2006
Giro has molto mountains for a tough climbers tour,
CyclingNews, November 13, 2005