Hesjedal wins Giro d'Italia

2012-05-27 17:46

Milan - Ryder Hesjedal created cycling history here on Sunday, the Garmin rider becoming the first Canadian to win the Giro d'Italia.

The 31-year-old landed the first of the season's big three tours after prising the leader's pink jersey from Spain's Joaquim Rodriguez at the end of this 28.2km time trial.

Hesjedal, bagging a first major Tour for his country, had set up the race against the clock ready to pounce at 31sec behind Rodriguez after two stamina-sapping days riding in the Alps.

Favoured by the final day format he crossed the line after three weeks gruelling racing 16s clear of Rodriguez, with Belgium Thomas De Gendt, who put up a superb solo effort to claim Saturday's penultimate stage, in third at 1min39s.

For the first time since 1995 no Italian made the podium, with the highest placed local rider being last year's winner Michele Scarponi in fourth at 2:05.

Ivan Basso came in fifth at 3:44.

The closing 21st stage in Milan was won by Italian Marco Pinotti ahead of Geraint Thomas and Jesse Sergent, with Hesjedal assuring ultimate victory in sixth.

Rodriguez, who had said he was going to need a miracle to deny Hesjedal in the time trial, came in 1:56 down on Pinotti.

Giro d'Italia results after Sunday's 21st and final stage, a 28.2 kilometre time trial around Milan:


1. Marco Pinotti (ITA/BMC) 33min 06sec, 2. Geraint Thomas (GBR/SKY) at 39sec, 3. Jesse Sergent (NZL/RSH) 53., 4. Alex Rasmussen (DEN/GRM) 1:00, 5. Thomas De Gendt (BEL/VAC) 1:01, 6. Ryder Hesjedal (CAN/GRM) 1:09, 7. Gustav Larsson (SWE/VAC) 1:14, 8. Maciej Bodnar (POL/LIQ) 1:15, 9. Svein Tuft (CAN/GEC) 1:22, 10. Julien Vermote (BEL/OPQ) 1:23


22. Michele Scarponi (ITA/LAM) 1:54, 26. Joaquim Rodriguez (ESP/KAT) 1:56

Overall standings:

1. Ryder Hesjedal (CAN/GRM) 91hr 39min 02sec, 2. Joaquim Rodriguez (ESP/KAT) at 16 seconds behind, 3. Thomas De Gendt (BEL/VAC) 1:39, 4. Michele Scarponi (ITA/LAM) 2:05, 5. Ivan Basso (ITA/LIQ) 3:44, 6. Damiano Cunego (ITA/LAM) 4:40, 7. Rigoberto Uran (COL/SKY) 5:57, 8. Domenico Pozzovivo (ITA/COG) 6:28, 9. Sergio Henao (COL/SKY) 7:50, 10. Mikel Nieve (ESP/EUS) 8:08