Sport director Fabrizio Guidi stood at the front of the #PinkArgyle bus during the team meeting before stage 20 of the Giro d’Italia, as he has done every day since the race arrived in Italy earlier this month. He looked at the seven exhausted faces seated in front of him and he outlined the complexity of the challenge they would face in the opening hours of the race. It was the perfect day for the breakaway to stick, he told them, but the fight to escape would be among some of the hardest racing they had done all week — a week full of hard racing. They needed to give the fight everything they had, he told them. If they did, they could be handsomely rewarded.
Mission accomplished. Mike Woods made the move that would ultimately produce stage winner Mikel Nieve (Mitchelton-SCOTT). Woods fell off the pace on the Col Saint Pantaleon, when Nieve forced the pace and forced a three-rider selection.
“Today was typical Giro,” said Guidi. “It was a crazy race but fantastic at the end. We had a plan to get someone in the break. Woods did good but at the end it was impossible to follow Nieve who was on a super day. But I’m happy because it wasn’t easy to get into the break today and they showed character at the end of such a hard Giro to fully commit.”