Giro d'Italia: Tratnik adds to Slovenian success

By Russell Greaves 20 October 2020 5
Giro d'Italia: Tratnik adds to Slovenian success

Jan Tratnik won a gruelling stage 16 of the Giro d'Italia to taste victory on a Grand Tour for the first time.

Continuing a recent theme of Slovenian success, Tratnik showed his grit with a dogged ride on the punishing 229-kilometre route from Udine to San Daniele del Friuli.

The undulating course featured several sharp climbs, including a section towards the end with a 20 per cent gradient at Via Sottomonte.

But none of that could derail the Bahrain-McLaren rider, as Tratnik followed in the footsteps of compatriots Tadej Pogacar and Primoz Roglic in sealing a podium spot at one of the sport's three headline events.

"I was feeling good, sometimes the best defence is attacking," said Tratnik of his sprint for the line.

"When it's steep like this, sometimes everyone has spent energy, so it was good."

He is not in contention to be on the podium at the end of the race, now in its third week, with Deceuninck-Quick-Step Joao Almeida still leading the way in the General Classification.

Indeed, the Portuguese extended his advantage over Team Sunweb's Wilco Kelderman, who is now 17 seconds back.

Tratnik's joy followed a great deal of suffering as he joined the 28-man breakaway before going solo with around 40km remaining.

Despite the efforts of Ben O’Connor and Ben Swift to chase him down, the 30-year-old held firm to cross the line seven seconds clear of the former.

 

STAGE RESULT

1. Jan Tratnik (Bahrain-McLaren) 06:04:36
2. Ben O'Connor (NTT Pro Cycling) +00:07
3. Enrico Battaglin (Bahrain-McLaren) +01:14
4. Kamil Malecki (CCC Team) +01:14
5. Ben Swift (Team INEOS) +01:14

CLASSIFICATION STANDINGS

General Classification 
1. Joao Almeida (Deceuninck-Quick-Step) 65:45:08
2. Wilco Kelderman (Team Sunweb) +00:17
3. Jai Hindley (Team Sunweb) +02:58

Points Classification 
1. Arnaud Demare (Groupama-FDJ) 221
2. Peter Sagan (Bora-Hansgrohe) 184
3. Joao Almeida (Deceuninck-Quick-Step) 90

King of the Mountains 
1. Giovanni Visconti (Vini Zabu-Brado-KTM) 148
2. Ruben Guerreiro (EF Pro Cycling) 118
3. Filippo Ganna (Team INEOS) 48

WHAT'S NEXT?

Stage 17 takes the riders on a 203km route from Bassano del Grappa to Madonna di Campiglio, with a summit finish in store to test tired legs.

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Russell Greaves

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