2015 Giro d'Italia

2015 Giro d'Italia
2015 UCI World Tour, race 15 of 28[1]
Alberto Contador climbing while wearing the pink leader's jersey
Alberto Contador, winner of the 2015 Giro, wearing the pink jersey
Race details
Dates9 May – 31 May 2015
Stages21
Distance3,481.8 km (2,163 mi)
Winning time88h 22' 25"
Results
Winner Alberto Contador (ESP)(Tinkoff–Saxo)
 Second Fabio Aru (ITA)(Astana)
 Third Mikel Landa (ESP)(Astana)

Points Giacomo Nizzolo (ITA)(Trek Factory Racing)
Mountains Giovanni Visconti (ITA)(Movistar Team)
Youth Fabio Aru (ITA)(Astana)
 TeamAstana
 Team PointsAstana
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The 2015 Giro d'Italia (English: Tour of Italy) was a three-week Grand Tour cycling stage race that took place in May 2015. It was the 98th running of the Giro d'Italia and took place principally in Italy, although some stages visited France and Switzerland. The 3,481.8-kilometre (2,163.5 mi) race included 21 stages, beginning in San Lorenzo al Mare on 9 May and concluding in Milan on 31 May. It was the fifteenth race of the 2015 UCI World Tour. The Giro was won by Alberto Contador (Tinkoff–Saxo), with Fabio Aru (Astana) second and Aru's teammate Mikel Landa third.

Contador first took the lead after stage 5, the race's first uphill finish. His defence of the pink jersey (given to the leader in the General classification in the Giro d'Italia)) was put in doubt when he injured his left shoulder in a crash in the sixth stage. He held his lead through several stages stage but was caught up in another crash in stage 13, which caused him to lose the lead. He took the lead back the following day in the 59.4-kilometre (36.9 mi) Individual time trial, where he gained a lead of several minutes over all his rivals. Despite aggressive riding from Aru and Landa in the final week, Contador was able to defend his lead to the finish of the race. This was his third Giro d'Italia title, after the 2008 race.

As well as finishing second overall, Aru won the white jersey as the best young rider in the week. Giacomo Nizzolo (Trek Factory Racing) won the points competition and Giovanni Visconti (Movistar) won the mountains classification. Astana finished first in both the team ranking by time and the team ranking by points. Contador, Visconti and Nizzolo all won their classifications without winning any stage victories.

Teams

As the Giro d'Italia was a UCI World Tour event, all seventeen UCI WorldTeams were automatically invited and obliged to send a squad.[2] Five UCI Professional Continental teams were given wildcard places in the race by RCS Sport, the race organisers. Four of these were Italian-based teams: Androni Giocattoli–Sidermec, Bardiani–CSF, Nippo–Vini Fantini and Southeast Pro Cycling. Southeast's entry in the race was earned by their victory in the 2014 Coppa Italia, when they competed as Neri Sottoli; they were invited despite three recent doping cases in the team.[2][3] The final wildcard place was awarded to CCC–Sprandi–Polkowice, a Polish-based team.[4] CCC-Sprandi-Polkowice's invitation immediately received attention because the team's roster included two prominent riders who has previously served bans for doping: Stefan Schumacher and Davide Rebellin.[3] The day after the announcement, Cycling Weekly reported that the team might omit the riders from its squad for the race.[5]

Several prominent teams applied for wildcard places but were unsuccessful. These were UnitedHealthcare, Colombia, Wanty–Groupe Gobert and Caja Rural–Seguros RGA.[2]

The team presentation took place in San Remo on the evening before the first stage.[6] As each team sent nine riders to the race, the startlist contained 198 riders.[7] George Bennett (LottoNL–Jumbo) was withdrawn from the startlist on the night before the race, however, as a blood test had revealed low cortisol levels. As his team was part of the Movement for Credible Cycling (MPCC), he was not allowed to start the Giro.[8] LottoNL–Jumbo therefore began the race with eight riders and there were 197 riders in the peloton at the beginning of the race.[7] This included riders from 36 different countries, with the largest numbers coming from Italy (59), France (15), Belgium (12) and the Netherlands (12). The average age of riders in the Giro was 28.95; they ranged from the 21-year-old Rick Zabel (BMC Racing Team) to the 41-year-old Alessandro Petacchi (Southeast).[9]

UCI WorldTeams

UCI Professional Continental teams

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