Giro d'Italia Stage 3: Quickstep's Wouter Weylandt takes stage, Vino now in pink
Baptism of fire for Team Sky continues
It didn't get any better today for Team Sky's Bradley Wiggins and even Maglia Rosa wearer Cadel Evans went into the crash barriers at the same pile-up 7 Km from the finish that put paid to Sky's chain gang. But Britain's David Millar is up to 3rd on GC and 20-year-old Adam Blythe, a first-time Grand Tour rider from Sheffield took 5th on the stage.
After yesterday's issues nobody was expecting an easy ride but they might have hoped for some good luck. As it was, Cadel Evans, who in the previous convoluted and crash-strewn stage had managed to stay out of trouble and roll over the line just behind the sprinters, this time found himself in the chicane barriers and was forced to chase like a madman and without help for the final 7 kilometres.
Just like yesterday, controversial Alexander Vinokourov of Astana managed to stay at the front but just enough out of the wind to arrive trouble-free and now takes over the precious pink jersey.
The sprinters were magnificent and all the more exciting for seeing some relatively new faces; 25-year-old Wouter Weylandt pulling off a breathtaking move around the final corner with 100m to go, comprehensively trouncing Aussie multi-Olympic track gold medallist Graeme Brown (Rabobank) and Robert Förster (Milram). They left André Greipel of HTC-Columbia in 6th going backwards, the man all the tweeters had announced as a shoe-in with one kilometre to go, just behind the young Brit Adam Blythe riding for Omega Pharma Lotto.
1) Wouter Weylandt (QuickStep) (5:00:06)
2) Graeme Brown (Rabobank) (same time)
3) Robert Förster (Milram) (same time)
4) Danilo Hondo (Lampre) (same time)
5) Adam Blythe (Omega Pharma Lotto) (same time)
6) André Greipel (HTC Columbia) (same time)
7) Linus Gerdemann (Milram) (same time)
8) Vincenzo Nibali (Liquigas) (same time)
9) Thomas Rohregger (Milram) (same time)
10) Alexandre Vinokourov (Astana) (same time)
Top 10 Giro d'Italia Stage 3
selected others12) David Millar (Garmin) (same time) 31) Cadel Evans (BMC Racing) (+46) 63) Bradley Wiggins (Team Sky) (+3:59) DNF Christian Vande Velde (Garmin) (DNF)
Top 10 General Classification after stage 3 1) Alexandre Vinokourov (Astana) (10:07:18) 2) Richie Porte (Saxo Bank) (same time) 3) David Millar (Garmin) (+1) 4) Vincenzo Nibali (Liquigas) (+5) 5) Marcel Sieberg (HTC Columbia) (+7) 6) Matthew Goss (HTC Columbia) (+10) 7) André Greipel (HTC Columbia) (+10) 8) Linus Gerdemann (Milram) (+12) 9) Stefano Garzelli (Acqua & Sapone) (+15) 10) Pieter Weening (Rabobank) (+16)