Foliforov takes huge victory for Gazprom in Giro, Kruijswijk extends his lead

Alexander Foliforov (Gazprom-Rusvelo) took a hugely surprising win in the mountain time trial on stage 15 of the Giro d’Italia. He edged out race leader Steven Kruijswijk (Team LottoNl-Jumbo) by less than a second with Alejandro Valverde (Movistar Team) resurrecting his Giro with a third place on Alpe di Siusi.

Another beautiful sunny day in the mountains welcomed the riders to the start of stage fifteen of the Giro d’Italia, a 10.8kilometre uphill individual time trial from Castelrotto to Alpe di Siusi.

The best early time was set by Aleksey Rybalkin (Gazprom-Rusvelo) who completed the climb in 30minutes 36seconds then settled down for a spell in the ‘hot seat’.

Ian Boswell (Sky) knocked Rybalkin out of the ‘hot seat’ with a time of 30minutes four seconds, but Alexander Foliforov (Gazprom-Rusvelo) was the first rider to break 29minutes posting a time of 28minutes 39seconds to take over from Boswell in virtual first place.

Foliforov’s time was holding as one by one the race favourites made their way out onto the road one minute after the other,  Kruijswijk being the only one who threatened his stage win.

It was a day to forget for Vincenzo Nibali (Astana) who lost over two minutes. The Italian was already down on his rivals for the maglia rosa before dropping his chain and changing bikes.

Kruijswijk looked unflappable, unbreakable even, setting the fastest time at the first time check at 4.4km and carrying that momentum onto the stepper sections of the climb. He now leads Chaves by 2:21 as the race heads into the third rest-day. Nibali is at 2:51, while Valverde remains in fourth at 3:29.

Tomorrow is the third and final rest day of this year’s Giro d’Italia with stage sixteen taking place on Tuesday, another mountain stage covering 132kilometres from Bressanone to Andalo. The stage includes the infamous Mendel Pass/Passo della Mendola that comes before the final climb of the day the Paganella with brutal gradients of 15%.

Watch the full stage here.

Giro d’Italia 2016 – stage 15 results (ITT Alpe di Siusi):

1 Alexander Foliforov (Gazprom-Rusvelo)


2 Steven Kruijswijk (LottoNl-Jumbo)


3 Alejandro Valverde (Movistar)


4 Sergey Firsanov (Gazprom-Rusvelo)


5 Michele Scarponi (Astana)


6 Esteban Chaves (Orica-GreenEdge)


7 Ilnur Zakarin (Katusha)


8 Joe Dombrowski (Cannondale)


9 Bob Jungels (Etixx – Quick-Step)


10 Rafal Majka (Tinkoff)



General classification after stage 15:

1 Steven Kruijswijk (LottoNl-Jumbo)


2 Esteban Chaves (Orica-GreenEdge)


3 Vincenzo Nibali (Astana)


4 Alejandro Valverde (Movistar)


5 Rafal Majka (Tinkoff) +04’38”
6 Ilnur Zakarin (Katusha)


7 Andrey Amador (Movistar)


8 Bob Jungels (Etixx – Quick-Step)


9 Kanstantsin Siutsou (Dimension Data)


10 Jakob Fuglsang (Astana)