Luperini solidifies her lead as best Italian rider at the Giro d'Italia Faren Honda's Fabiana Luperini looked comfortable as she crossed the line in 7th position in today's 4th stage of the Giro d¹Italia Femminile.
Team Faren Honda was placed under attack early on in the race as numerous rival teams were out to make amends from the destruction which took place out on the road during yesterday¹s 3rd stage.
A small break of 10 riders slipped clear 25kms into the 98 kilometre race and it was left to the teams of the current tour leader Evelyn Stevens "Specialised Lululemon" and team "Faren Honda" to bring back the break which threatened to disrupt the general classification. The two teams determinedly spearheaded the peloton to successfully bring back the break heading into the major climb of the day.
Faren Honda's director Fortunato Lacquaniti called the entire team to move to the front and close down the break-away. Nicole Cooke, Jennifer Hohl, Gracie Elvin, Julia Blindyuk and Giuseppina Grassi played a significant and dominant role in bringing back the early break before the 65km mark. Luperini was protected and positioned well when the race hit the first climb of the day whilst Gilmore conserved energy leading into tomorrow's sprinters stage.
Towards the top of the first significant climb around the 70km mark, current tour leader Evelyn Stevens and Emma Pooley broke away from the remaining small group - which contained Faren Honda¹s Fabiana Luperini. Marianne Vos attacked on the descent into the final 7km climb famous for her bike handling skills she gained a lead of 1 min 26 seconds by the time she reached the top of the final climb and crossed the line for a solo mountain top victory. In doing so, Vos reclaimed the Giro d¹Italia leader¹s jersey, the maglia rosa.
A small staggered group of about 10 riders crossed the line behind Vos. Luperini finished 1 minute 38 seconds behind today¹s winner after riding the final 25km's with a broken spoke, fortunately she held onto her 4th position on GC.
Tomorrow the team will contest one of the few remaining flat stages and given its predominantly horizontal profile, it's set to be a showdown amongst the sprinters.