Cyclists cross a bridge during the seventh stage of the Giro d’Italia, Tour of Italy cycling race, from Frosinone to Foligno, Italy, Friday May 16, 2014. Nacer Bouhanni of France sprinted to victory on the seventh stage of the Giro d’Italia on Friday, while Michael Matthews retained the overall leader’s pink jersey. Bouhanni, who had never won a Grand Tour stage before this year’s Giro, edged out Giacomo Nizzolo by less than half a wheel for his second victory in this year’s race. (AP Photo/Fabio Ferrari)
- The remaining sprint specialists should battle to win the day on Stage 13 of the Giro d’Italia (Friday, May 21)
- Friday’s 198 kilometres from Ravenna to Verona are perfectly flat
- With Caleb Ewan and Tim Merlier out of the race, what sprinter should you back?
Going into this year’s Giro d’Italia, Tim Merlier and Caleb Ewan were expected to dominate sprint stages. They did. Merlier took the race’s initial stage, and Ewan got to the line first on the next two sprints. Both have since dropped out. What sprinter will tally a victory on Friday?
Stage 13 begins on the coast of the Adriatic Sea north of San Marino in Ravenna (6:25 am EST) and travels northwest through Ferrara and Mantua to Verona. There is little nuance to the route. It is flat and straightforward.
With two top sprinters out of the mix, oddsmakers don’t have a strong preference for one favorite on Stage 13. It seems like five or six riders all have a strong shot, with everyone else more of a longshot. Let’s look at the odds and ponder the best options.
2021 Giro d’Italia Stage 13 Odds
|Rider||Odds to Win Stage||Top-3 Finish Odds at DraftKings|
Odds as of May 20th.
Over nearly 200 meters on Friday the elevation gain is a whopping 200 metres. This is as flat a stage as riders will get. While timing is important, this is less strategic and more about pure speed.
On Thursday five riders raced to the lead just before the group reached Florence, and later 11 others caught up. The 16 opened up more than a 12 minute advantage. Following several attacks within the group, Andrea Vendrame put away Lucas Hamilton to win the stage.
Egan Bernal solidified his spot ahead of the other GC riders on Wednesday in the dust, and held that position on Thursday. He leads Aleksandr Vlasov by 45 seconds with Damiano Caruso in third position, 1:12 back. Hugh Carthy is 1:17 behind the leader in fourth place. Simon Yates is five seconds behind Carthy.
2021 UEFA Champions League Odds Tracker
Dylan Groenewegen had an unfortunate end to 2020. After a successful Volta a la Comunitat Valenciana, and a strong UAE Tour, he caused a major accident and was injured during the first stage of the Tour de Pologne.
Back from his injury, and with several top sprinters out of the Giro, Groenewegen makes a lot of sense on this pure sprint stage. He has routinely won sprints including four times at the Tour de France.
Giacomo Nizzolo is knocking on the door. A two time winner of the Points Classification at the Giro, he is still seeking his first Grand Tour stage victory.
Nizzolo was the runner up on stages two and five this year. At the age of 32, this could be the Italians last best chance to earn daily honors.
It is a rare combination to both be relatively young and already wildly accomplished, but that is the case for Fernando Gaviria. The 26 year old Columbian has won five stages at the Giro, and a pair at the Tour de France.
Gaviria won three stages last year on the Vuelta a San Juan. He won the initial flat stage at the Giro in 2019.
Veteran Elia Viviani has taken a stage on each of the Grand Tours. He started this year strong winning the Cholet-Pays de la Loire.
In his career the 32 year old Viviani has eight Grand Tour stage wins including five on the Giro d’Italia.
This is not the type of stage you would normally choose Peter Sagan. He is crafty, thoughtful, and fast, but probably not the quickest of the bunch. He won Stage 10, but most of his sprint rivals had been dropped. A completely flat route leaves little room for creative maneuvering.
Count out Sagan at your own peril. He has won 18 Grand Tour stages and eight times has taken the Points Classification at the Tour de France.
Davide Cimolai has worked as both a primary lead-out rider and a sprint specialist. Last year he was very strong winning the Vuelta a Castilla y León and taking a stage on the Tour de Wallonie for team Israel Start-Up Nation.
Like several other rivals, if the 31 year old Cimolai is going to ever win a Grand Tour stage, this one is a really good opportunity.
Matteo Moschetti has never won a Grand Tour stage either, but he is seven years younger than Cimolai and competing in just his second Giro. He won this year’s Per sempre Alfredo.
Last year Moschetti won the Trofeo Campos, Porreres, Felanitx, Ses Salines
and the Trofeo de Playa de Palma-Palma. He is less experienced than many other riders here, but in good form, and with young fresh legs.
Dave Friedman has covered professional and college sports for two decades. From ESPN to the Associated Press, Regional Sports Networks, Metro Networks, and many local outlets, he has written about and broadcast major and minor events throughout the country.