Today's stage was a doozey! The race finished with a 3km climb including a section with a 14% gradient. Grant has been under the watchful eyes of the leading teams, so Tom decided to play the game a bit differently. Right out of the gate, Tom jumped and created the biggest gap he could from the main peloton. The idea was to get the other teams with high rankings to chase and spend extra energy pulling Tom back to the pack. This gave Grant the ability to sit in at high paces and conserve his energy for the big finish.
Overall Grant came in 7th and racked up a few more points for the overall contingency. Tomorrows big road race should prove to be more suiting for the two Americans. There will be more climbing but only up to 11% gradient. The Stradalli guys should have a good chance of collecting more points and hopefully put Grant in position to race for the rainbow stripped jersey.
The picture above shows Tom rolling in after the hill climb on his 2012 Stradalli Catania road bike. Hopefully the light weight 14 lb bike helped him conserve some extra energy for tomorrow.