By Graham Jones
and Barry Boyce

CyclingRevealed Historians



Giro d'Italia Champions
Living and Dead







CyclingRevealed's Giro Perspective

Tappa 8, May 15th, Lamporecchio to Firenze (Florence), 41.5 km Individual Time Trial

Flying Under the Tuscan Sun

The sun is shining in Tuscany. The extraordinary scenery of region around Florence will go unnoticed by the racers as they concentrate on the stage 8 ‘race against the clock’. 

The finishing City of Firenze (Florence) [ Image ©: ]

The time trial course includes a difficult Pinone climb on Monte Albano halfway through the 45 km stage. This ‘race of truth’ is more than enough to sort out the contenders. However on this Sunday in May the surprise man of the moment turned out to be American David Zabriskie, who blazed into Florence under the famed Tuscan sun. Zabriskie was off early and was sent out to set fast split times for team captain Ivan Basso.

Race Leader Danilo Di Luca

ITT 3rd Place Paolo Savoldelli

ITT 2nd Place Ivan Basso

ITT Stage winner David Zabriskie

One by one the top riders passed each intermediate split slower than Dave Z. Only Basso could equal Zabriskie’s 40’56” at the third time check in Poggio a Caiano. 

The very strong wind of the day turned into a tailwind and Zabriskie rode the final 16 km at an average speed of 55 km/h for the stage win. His winning time was 58’31”.

Stage winner Dave Zabriskie [ Image by La Gazetta ]

The only GC question to be answered was “could Di Luca hold onto the Maglia Rosa?” Ivan Basso, having lost time on an earlier stage, needed to gain time in the time trial. He finished the course in 58’48”. Di Luca struggled through the flat finishing section and ended the stage in 1h00’06”, 1’18” behind Basso. By 9seconds the Maglia Rosa remained on Di Luca’s back for another stage.

Danilo Di Luca retained the Maglia Rosa by 9” [ Image by La Gazetta ]

Dave Zabriskie had the winning time but all the contenders were flying under the Tuscan sun.

The Tuscany Sun [ Image by La Gazetta ]



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