What supposed to be a stage for the escapees turned into first round of the fight among GC contenders. Sylwester Szmyd was trying his chances in a breakaway and was the highest ranked CCC Sprandi Polkowice rider on the line in La Spezia.
It was very lively and dynamic stage. Numerous riders made an attempt to break clear early into the race. CCC Sprandi Polkowice was also very active and eager to jump away. Eventually Sylwester Szmyd was the one who made the breakaway of the day. Just like yesterday, the leading group was very large, with around 30 riders, among them Roman Kreuziger, Sonny Colberelli, Franco Pellizotti, Giovani Visconti, Davide Formolo, Pieter Weening.
The pack would split and come back together few times, as the advantage over the peloton reached 10 minutes. The bunch hesitated long to start a solid chase, and with 60km to go the gap was still around 9 minutes.
Szmyd did his best to stay in the front, but he still hasn’t fully recovered after the crash, which he was involved in on stage 2, and was not able to follow attacks from the escape. He got dropped with around 55km to go.
On the penultimate cat.3 climb Astana broke peloton in pieces and only 20 riders left in the main group. There were no CCC Sprandi Polkowice riders in it.
Szmyd was caught by the shattered bunch with 38km to go, but the pace set by the Kazakh team was too strong for the Polish rider and he fell behind.
Davide Formolo launched an attack from the break on the final climb (cat.3), which was located 10 km from the finish. He hold on to take a solo victory. New GC leader, Simon Clarke (Orica GreenEDGE) claimed 2nd place.
Sylwester Szmyd was the top CCC Sprandi Polkowice finisher, with 52nd place, around 13 minutes back.