Giro d'Italia: Menchov wins
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  Posted June 1st, 2009 by Zdenko  in Cycling | No comments yet.

Menchov wins Giro d’Italia despite fall

 By ANDREW DAMPF, AP Sports Writer

ROME – Denis Menchov won the 100th edition of the Giro d’Italia on Sunday despite falling in the final half mile.

21-menchov-col-bannerThe Russian lost control on rain-slicked cobblestones and slid for about 10 yards. He got right back up, ran ahead to his bike but then opted to take a spare bike provided by his team car. Menchov entered the final stage – an individual time trial – with a 20-second lead on Danilo Di Luca and was comfortably ahead of the Italian at the final checkpoint before he fell.

ITALY GIRO CYCLINGMenchov finished the race with a 41-second advantage over Di Luca, while Franco Pellizotti was third overall, 1:59 back. Seven-time Tour de France winner Lance Armstrong finished 12th overall, 15:59 behind Menchov.

Ignatas Konovalovas of Lithuania won the 8.95-mile time trial through the streets of Rome. Bradley Wiggins of Britain finished second, 1 second behind, and Edvald Boasson Hagen of Norway was third, 7 seconds back.

menchov_roma3Menchov crossed with the 10th fastest time, 24 seconds behind Konovalovas, and Di Luca finished 17th in the time trial, 45 seconds behind.

The usually taciturn Menchov let out a scream when he crossed the line, raising his arms in triumph.

Despite the rain, Menchov used an aerodynamic rear disc wheel for the time trial, while Di Luca used normal wheels to be more agile on the slick roads. The Italian took risks, cut corners and gained five seconds on Menchov at the start of the time trial, but Menchov’s bigger legs eventually prevailed.

giro09st21-menchfanfareThe time trial concluded in front of the Colosseum after taking riders past the Vatican and the Circus Maximus. Armstrong took few risks on the slick roads and finished 53rd in the race against the clock, 1:19 behind. Armstrong’s Astana teammate, Levi Leipheimer, finished sixth overall, 5:28 back.

ITALY GIRO CYCLINGLance Armstrong of the United States rides past the ancient Colosseum as he approaches the starting area prior to the last stage of the Giro d’italia, Tour of Italy cycling race, an individual time trial, in Rome, Sunday, May 31, 2009

Menchov won two of the race’s key stages, the mountaintop finish at Alpe di Siusi in stage 5 and the marathon-like 37.7-mile individual time trial in stage 12. He is the third Russian to win the Giro after Eugeni Berzin in 1994 and Pavel Tonkov in 1996.

ITALY GIRO CYCLINGMenchov also won the Spanish Vuelta twice, in 2005 after Roberto Heras was disqualified for doping, and outright in 2007. Last year, he finished fifth in the Giro and fourth in the Tour de France.

Menchov has faced questions lately over his alleged involvement in a blood-doping case in Austria, although he has denied involvement.

His Dutch team, Rabobank, has confirmed that it has been contacted by Austrian authorities for questioning.

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Final General classification

 
1 Denis Menchov (Rus) Rabobank                                86.03.11
2 Danilo Di Luca (Ita) LPR Brakes - Farnese Vini              0.41
3 Franco Pellizotti (Ita) Liquigas                            1.59
4 Carlos Sastre (Spa) Cervelo Test Team                       3.46
5 Ivan Basso (Ita) Liquigas                                   3.59
6 Levi Leipheimer (USA) Astana                                5.28
7 Stefano Garzelli (Ita) Acqua & Sapone - Caffe Mokambo       8.43
8 Michael Rogers (Aus) Team Columbia - Highroad              10.01
9 Tadej Valjavec (Slo) AG2R La Mondiale                      11.13
10 Marzio Bruseghin (Ita) Lampre - N.G.C.                    11.28
11 David Arroyo (Spa) Caisse d'Epargne                       12.50
12 Lance Armstrong (USA) Astana                              15.59
13 Jose Serpa (Col) Serramenti PVC Diquigiovanni             16.11
14 Kevin Seeldraeyers (Bel) Quick Step                       16.15
15 Yaroslav Popovych (Ukr) Astana                            
16 Kanstantsin Siutsou (Blr) Team Columbia - Highroad        19.10
17 Francesco Masciarelli (Ita) Acqua & Sapone - Caffe Mokambo   
18 Janez Brajkovic (Slo) Astana                              28.07
19 Damiano Cunego (Ita) Lampre - N.G.C.                      28.39
20 Lars Ytting Bak (Den) Team Saxo Bank                      31.53
21 Francis De Greef (Bel) Silence-Lotto                      33.18
22 Andriy Grivko (Ukr) ISD                                   39.19
23 Eduard Vorganov (Rus) Xacobeo Galicia                     45.59
24 Gilberto Simoni (Ita) Serramenti PVC Diquigiovanni        46.03
25 Thomas Lövkvist (Swe) Team Columbia - Highroad            48.00
26 Jackson Rodriguez (Ven) Serramenti PVC Diquigiovanni      50.52
27 Gabriele Bosisio (Ita) LPR Brakes - Farnese Vini          53.46
28 Laurens Ten Dam (Ned) Rabobank                            55.07
29 Thomas Rohregger (Aut) Team Milram                        57.13
30 Carlos José Ochoa (Ven) Serramenti PVC Diquigiovanni    1.01.48
31 Daniel Navarro (Spa) Astana                             1.02.21
32 Michele Scarponi (Ita) Serramenti PVC Diquigiovanni     1.05.06
33 Serge Pauwels (Bel) Cervelo Test Team                   1.07.24
34 Evgeny Petrov (Rus) Team Katusha                        1.10.01
35 Andrey Zeits (Kaz) Astana                               1.14.56
36 Christopher Froome (GBr) Barloworld                     1.15.21
37 Alexander Efimkin (Rus) AG2R La Mondiale                1.19.57
38 Paolo Tiralongo (Ita) Lampre - N.G.C.                   1.24.43
39 Iker Camano (Spa) Fuji-Servetto                         1.25.02
40 Marco Pinotti (Ita) Team Columbia - Highroad            1.27.17
41 Mauricio Ardila (Col) Rabobank                          1.28.38
42 Luca Mazzanti (Ita) Team Katusha                        1.29.54
43 Simon Gerrans (Aus) Cervelo Test Team                   1.31.41
44 Sylvester Szmyd (Pol) Liquigas                          1.31.44
45 Pablo Lastras (Spa) Caisse d'Epargne                    1.32.23
46 Leonardo Bertagnolli (Ita) Serramenti PVC Diquigiovanni 1.34.52
47 Dario David Cioni (Ita) ISD                             1.36.14
48 Jens Voigt (Ger) Team Saxo Bank                         1.37.25
49 José Luis Rubiera (Spa) Astana                          1.38.56
50 Fredrik Kessiakoff (Swe) Fuji-Servetto                  1.41.08
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