PIC BY TDWSPORT.COM
For the second day in a row T-Mobile just missed out on a stage win at the Giro, but gained the considerable consolation of putting one of their riders into the maglia rosa. After CSC edging them out in the TTT yesterday, Friday's stage saw Robbie McEwen take his third stage win in six days, with Olaf Pollack taking second and with it a 12-second bonus that boosted him into the lead at team-mate Serhiy Honchar's expense.
Apart from some last-kilometre crashes near the rear of the peloton, this was a pretty quiet stage. A three-rider break was hauled back with 18km remaining of a long stage to Forli, after which a bunch sprint was a formality.
Milram yet again led it out, this time for young Elia Rigotto, but he was soon swamped. Ag2r's Tomas Vaitkus looked like he might hang on for a surprise victory, but timing is everything in a sprint and few have mastered this art better than McEwen.
The Australian burst to the front with 50 metres remaining and just held off the fast-finishing Pollack. Davitamon's resurgence from zeroes to heroes continued thanks to the win, and the Belgian team is also being linked with Discovery Channel's Leif Hoste, who went so well in the cobbled Classics this spring. Davitamon's offer is believed to be in excess of what Discovery have offered the Belgian, who is sure to be in demand after finishing second in the Tour of Flanders and Paris-Roubaix - before being disqualified from the latter.
Stage 6, Busseto-Forli
1 Robbie McEwen (Aus) Davitamon-Lotto 227km in 5.24.13 (42.75kph)
2 Olaf Pollack (Ger) T-Mobile
3 Tomas Vaitkus (Lit) Ag2r
4 Leonardo Duque (Col) Cofidis
5 Koldo Fernandez (Spa) Euskaltel
6 Fabrizio Guidi (Ita) Phonak
7 Paolo Bettini (Ita) Quick Step
8 Elia Rigotto (Ita) Milram
9 Maximiliano Richeze (Arg) Panaria
10 Manuele Mori (Ita) Saunier Duval
1 Olaf Pollack (Ger) T-Mobile 20.54.34
2 Serhiy Honchar (Ukr) T-Mobile 0.02
3 Jens Voigt (Ger) CSC 0.08
4 Michael Rogers (Aus) T-Mobile
5 Ivan Basso (Ita) CSC 0.13
6 Paolo Savoldelli (Ita) Discovery Channel 0.22
7 Nicki Sorensen (Den) CSC 0.31
8 Stefan Schumacher (Ger) Gerolsteiner 0.33
9 Bobby Julich (USA) CSC 0.35
10 Jos Luis Rubiera (Spa) Discovery Channel 0.40
11 Tom Danielson (USA) Discovery Channel 0.46
PIC BY TDWSPORT.COM