Reggio Calabria - Terme Luigiane
Giro d'Italia - 11 May 2017
Giro d'Italia – Follow this cycling race live with Eurosport. The action starts at 19:45 on 11 May 2017. Our live coverage lets you follow all the key moments as they happen.
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And here's how Silvan Dillier took the win today - what an epic battle of uphill attrition...
So, no change in the overall standings with regards to the maglia rosa - but it remains to be seen if any of the big name favourites were caught out in any splits. For now, Bob Jungels holds on to his 6sec advantage over Geraint Thomas.
Confirmation that the pack were led over the line by Michael Woods of Cannondale, 39 seconds down on Dillier and Stuyven. Simone Andreetta took fourth just ahead.
Lukas Postlberger could only manage third place today after finding that steep ramp too much, coming home 12 seconds down. Another great day though for the first maglia rosa of this race.
Stuyven slammed his handlebars in frustration - and so he might: second place is 35 points, so not only has he missed out on the stage win, he's also 1pts behind Gaviria and the cilcamino jersey.
That's a maiden Grand Tour stage win for 26-year-old Silvan Dillier of BMC, who had too much in the legs to hold off a frustrated Jasper Stuyven of Trek-Segafredo.
The peloton comes home in drips and drabs about 30 seconds down... time will tell who has lost some precious seconds.
Victory for Silvan Dillier of BMC!
Dillier opens up the sprint... Stuyven has it covered... but Postlberger has popped...
They've come to a near stand-still as the game of cat and mouse continues... Andreetta is creeping back, but he won't have enough...
Postlberger looks to be suffering as Dillier comes to the front with Stuyven in his wheel. They're under the 1-to-go banner.
The leaders are down the bottom and about to negotiate the final climb... They have 1:30 over the chasing pack.
The leaders are on the hairpins - and because they're so densely packed, they're not that dangerous because you can't get much speed up. The gap is 1:35 now as Rui Costa of UAE Team Emirates comes to the front of the pack. Pedersen has been caught.
Back in the pack and numerous riders have been dropped, including Gaviria, Pozzato and some other sprinters.
Attack! Stuyven has a dig - Dillier follows, Postlberger just hangs on, but Andreetta cracks. Over the top the three riders go and they'll have a little flat run now ahead of those downhill hairpins.
Pedersen has popped and so we have just the four riders out in front now. Postlberger is beginning to gesticulate, urging the others to help on this climb. The gap is down to 1:45.
It's getting fast and furious behind with LottoNL-Jumbo, Movistar and Dimension Data all crowding the front, along with Team Sunweb. Remember, even if they don't reel in the leaders, there will be a battle for GC positions. We could still see a different rider in pink. The gap is down to 2:05.
Here's what the riders must tackle before the finish - it's quite a demanding end to this stage, and anything can yet happen, but with 2:40 to play with, you have to fancy one of the escapees holding on.
No, Rojas was dropped. But he's back now. The break is still combining well and have 2:53 to play with. They're approaching Terme Luigiane, which they will pass on a northward coastal loop before returning via the top road and then up to the town centre.
Mechanical for Jose Joaquim Rojas of Movistar, who is off the back of the pack. The gap is still three minutes for the leaders so it's almost certain that they'll stay out all the ay to the end. Actually, it may not be a mechanical - Rojas could be riding out ahead of the peloton, it's hard to tell.
Tempers fly in the peloton as Omar Fraile of Dimension Data swings a hand at Mayvey Mamykin of Katusha-Alpecin after the Russian lent in a bit too close for comfort on the climb. It will be interesting to see what the commissaires do after that incident a couple of days ago involving Javi Moreno and Diego Rosa... That said, no one was pulled back and pushed into spectators - the crime which saw Moreno kicked off the Giro on Tuesday.
Over the summit goes the Quick-Step-led peloton and they're trailing the break by three minutes. Pedersen is back - perhaps he was just chatting to the Trek team car.
Replays show that one of the Trek-Segafredo riders had been dropped before the summit - probably Pedersen.
Now Quick-Step Floors come to the front to marshal their man Bob Jungels up this climb. The gap is down to 3:20 for the leaders - an indication of how quickly things can change once the screw is turned. It's Postlberger who crests the summit ahead of Dillier, and the five-man break are onto this short, technical descent.
The leaders are onto the second categorised climb of the day, the Cat.4 Fuscaldo ascent, which is short but sharp. They have 3:55 to play with as Katusha-Alpecin, Movistar, Team Sky and Sunweb all come to the front.
Silvan Dillier is a good tip, too, should this break go the distance: he's not a bad climber, although his last win came almost two years ago in the Arctic Race of Norway. We shouldn't rule out stage one winner Lukas Postlberger, either - he's the only guy here who knows what it's like to win a stage on the Giro, although climbing is not his forte. Stuyven, of course, has won a stage on the Vuelta before - and did so, in 2015, with a broken scaphoid after an earlier crash. Hard man.
What a day this could be for Trek-Segafredo: Jasper Stuyven has already won both intermediate sprints - if he wins the stage, with help from team-mate Mads Pedersen, he'll move into the ciclamino jersey too. With the gap refusing to come down, that's looking more and more likely...
CCC-Sprandi Polkowice have joined the chase and it's down to 4:40. It will be an intriguing finale - but I'm going to put my neck out and sat these escapees will go the distance. Perhaps not all of them, but at the very least, one of them.
The gap is still not really coming down: it stays at five minutes despite the best efforts from Dimension Data and Astana, who have sent riders on to the front to help out the combined Wilier/Cannondale chase.
German national champion Andre Greipel has been off the back quite a lot today - earlier, to fill his skin suit with bottles for his Lotto Soudal team-mates, and just now, for no apparent reason. He came fourth yesterday after winning stage two on the weekend.
The pace is high now as Dimension Data throw in one man on the front to help lead the chase. They have Nathan Haas for the uphill finish. The gap is five minutes for the leaders, with Andreetta really starting to suffer out ahead.
The Wilier-Selle Italia team of Pippo Pozzato have returned to the front to help out Cannondale - and the gap almost instandly comes down to 5:20.
The gap has gone back to six minutes and it seems like no one is prepared to lend a hand to Cannondale-Drapac, who are still doing all the chasing. Unless someone throws their hat into the ring, then these five riders will stay out to contest the stage. It's that simple. Another option for the American team is Canada's Michael Woods. Remember - they haven't picked up a WorldTour win since Davide Formolo two years ago in the 2015 Giro in La Spezia.
The riders are about to hit a part of the race where heavy winds have been reported from journalists on the ground - so stay tuned, because it could get rather spicy. The break is still a comfortable 5:30 ahead and combining well. Time till tell, though, if they can keep their advantage all the way to the end.
The peloton edges through the feed zone 5:30 in arrears of the five leaders. No time for musettes for Cannondale-Drapac, who keep the pace high. They've been inland again for a bit - but they'll hit the coast again in about 10km. FDJ and BMC are on the front as well.
Our man in the cabin, Juan Antonio Flecha, talks you through today's finish in a little bit more detail...
Let's take a closer look at the final moments of today's stage. The riders will actually pass by Terme Luigiane and continue up the coastal road with around 12km remaining. At 8km there will be a tight right-hand bend and the road will head up, then down, then up once again ahead of a series of tight downhill hairpin bends with 4km remaining - see the photo below. The final 2km takes place on an average gradient of 5.3% - peaking at 10% inside the final 500m - so expect the pack to be blown apart and this one to be contested by a select group of riders. Of course, that's if they manage to reel in these five leaders...
We're into the last 100 clicks now and the GC teams have come to the front in anticipation of those winds and potential echelons. The gap is down to 5:50. Cannondale still lead the chase with Hugh Carthy doing most of the dog work. But Bahrain Merida and Movistar are right there, as are Sky and Wilier-Selle Italia.
The gap is down to 5:30 for the five leaders, who are: Lukas Postlberger (Bora-Hansgrohe), Jasper Stuyven and Mad Pedersen (both Trek-Segafredo), Simone Andreetta (Bardiani-CSF) and Silvan Dillier (BMC).
And a reminder of the other two jerseys: Jan Polanc, the Slovenian from UAE Team Emirates who won on Mount Etna, is in the maglia azzurra on 43pts - a comfortable 20-point lead over Daniel Teklehaimanot of Dimension Data. And the youth classification is being led by Quick-Step Floors' Bob Jungels, but as he's in pink, it's Britain's Adam Yates of Orica-Scott who is in white.
Some dicey moments for the escapees on the descent as a few of them take one of the hairpin bends a bit too wide after a bit of overcooking. The gap is down to 6:50 ahead of this long, flat coastal stretch - where we've been told it's quite blustery, so the peloton will be alert for any potential echelons forming in the crosswinds.
Stuyven does indeed win that second intermediate sprint and so that is another 20 points. Yes, I got it right the first time: in today's stage there are 20pts up for grabs for the winner of each sprint; it's 10pts for the separate intermediate sprint competition. So... the upshot is that Stuyven is now on 102 points, so he is above Griepel in the maglia ciclamino points classification - but still behind Gaviria on 138.
The five leaders have made it up a short climb to the plateau ahead of the second intermediate sprint at Vibo Valentia. Behind - around 4km behind, to be precise - Cannondale lead the pack up the incline. Expect Stuyven to mop up the points ahead of a descent back towards the coast. The gap is 7:40.
It's still Wilier and Cannondale combining on the front to regulate the lead of the break, which is down to 7:50. And a CORRECTION from earlier: Stuyven only picked up 10pts for that intermediate sprint and so he's up to 72pts, which is fifth in the ciclamino standings; he'll need to take the next one to move up to 82 points and third behind Greipel.
Talking of intermediate sprints, it's time to fill you in on the points classification. Yesterday, Fernando Gaviria leap-frogged Andre Greipel in the battle for the maglia ciclamino by winning the stage and mopping up maximum points in both intermediate sprints after the break had passed through ahead of the pack. The Colombian is now on 138 points to Greipel's 99. It's worth adding that Jasper Stuyven, who just took 20 points, is now up to 82 points and in third place.
The break rides through the first intermediate sprint at Mileto and it's uncontested, with Trek's Jasper Stuyven pocketing the maximum points. The gap is still 8:15 and so it's looking good for the break so far...
A quick reminder of the general classification: Bob Jungels is in the maglia rosa and leads by six seconds over Geraint Thomas, with a swathe of riders tied for time 10 seconds in arrears: the likes of Yates, Pozzovivo, Nibali, Dumoulin, Quintana, Mollema, Van Garderen, Amador, Pinot, Landa and Formolo. They're all the kind of rider who could win today, what with that uphill sprint finish - and with 10 bonus seconds gifted to the winner, we could have a tie at the top of the GC later today...
The leaders are on a gradual uphill rise to the two intermediate sprints - this ascent is not categorised, but it definitely goes up. With two men in the break, Trek-Segafredo have put themselves in a great position to get something from today's stage - especially with someone of the calibre as Stuyven.
In an alternative reality, Luka Pibernik won yesterday's stage; but in reality, he crossed the line and celebrated 6km too early. We spoke to the young Slovenian who made the headlines for the wrong reasons yesterday - and he was predictably sheepish about his mistake...
As for Cannondale, they have numerous cards to play today should it come back together: the uphill finish is one that could suit Davide Formolo, Tom Jelte-Slagter and Davide Villella, to name but a few.
We pick up the stage LIVE now and the five-man break have a large gap of 8:40 over the pack, which is being led by Wilier-Selle Italia and Cannondale - two teams that missed getting in the break and hope to get something from this stage. Indeed, the word on the street is that Filippo Pozzato, the frizzy-haired veteran at Wilier-Selle Italia, has marked today's stage as one that he can potentially win.
Earlier, the riders crested the first of two categorised climbs, the Cat.3 Barrit Terri, and it was Andreetta who took maximum points from the break ahead of Dillier and Stuyven.
The peloton sat up once the break formed and the gap grew to almost right minutes.
A handful of riders tried to bridge over but to no avail - but there was better luck for Simone Andreetta (Bardiani-CSF) and Silvan Dillier (BMC), who manage to join the leaders. The gap quickly increased to around three minutes.
A break went away after five kilometres - and it's that man Lukas Postlberger, the Austrian from Bora-Hansogrohe who wore the race's first pink jersey after his unexpected victory in stage one. He's joined by Trek-Segafredo duo Jasper Stuyven and Mad Pedersen.
191 riders took to the start today in Reggio Calabria - and could today be a day that the break goes the distance? The forecast is for a stiff breeze coming off the coast - that may make thinks rather spicy.
Here's what the riders have in store today... quite a feisty finale could be on the cards.
Yesterday, Fernando Gaviria claimed a hectic bunch sprint in Messina to snare his second stage win of the Giro d'Italia, as team-mate Bob Jungels retained the pink jersey. Gaviria, the 22-year-old Quick-Step Floor sprinter making ripples on his Grand Tour debut, once again proved his pedigree by surging past Irishman Sam Bennett (Bora-Hansgrohe) on the home straight of the 159km stage from Pedara in Sicily.
Hello and welcome to live coverage of stage six of the Giro d'Italia as the race hits mainland Italy for the first time with this punchy-finale'd 217km coastal ride from Reggio Calabria to Terme Luigiane.