Porte notches major wins which he hopes will give him what he needs to be dominant at the Giro d’Italia.
Richie Porte, Tasmanian-born rider, dubbed a bright cycling talent years ago, has been piling up wins since the cycling season began in 2015, after a long list of deceptions in 2014. Porte ended up second at the Tour Down Under, even though he was labeled the strongest rider. He also missed out in the time trial at the Volta a Algarve, dashing hopes of obtaining the title.
Now at last, it appears that his luck is finally turning. He attained his 2nd win at the Paris-Nice on slopes of the Col d’Eze in March, dominating the ride in the final day’s mountain time trial. Less than a week later, he beat south 3 Grand Tour winners in Catalonia, even if for some online betting sports fans, he cut it rather close to get a victorious first place.
The Grande Partenza of the 98th Giro d’Italia awaits Porte
These wins of course aren’t the kind of results that are career-altering but Giro d’Italia is, especially with setbacks in the last 18 months, Porte could do with a good win. For, in just two weeks he proved to fans who bet on him on online sportsbooks in Australia that he can ride to win. In the Paris-Nice race, he secured a petty shortfall to world champion, Michal Kwiatkowski, from Poland over the race’s week-long rippling ways. However, he then pegged the lead, and the overall title, on the final day of the race.
In the Volta a Catalunya, he dutifully warded off rivals right to the finish. A week ago, after completing a short spell at altitude at Team Sky’s training camp base in Tenerife, Porte nicked first place at the Giro del Trentino, making it his third overall win of 2015. Porte a sharp, lean, shrewd rider arrives at the Grande Partenza of the 98th Giro d’Italia a cool favorite for bettors who will bet on him under Australian gambling laws, to carry home a medal down-under.
More than ever, it is firmly believed that he can reiterate his prowess on the bike at the the Giro d’Italia.
Whether Porte has it in him to secure a place at the podium in Milan come May’s end is any body’s guess. What is certain though is that Porte needs to recreate what he consistently produced “at one-week events for the duration of a three-week Grand Tour”. Porte has managed to come 7 th, only once in a three-week race. That was incidentally 5 years ago at the 2010 Giro, which happened to be his first-year as a pro-biker.
Since then, it has been second places as Porte seemed to have been dogged by health issues and a general fatigue, probably the result of the heavy weight placed on his shoulders too succeed at all cost. Now, Porte appears stronger and faster and over the past two years his own potential has been properly probed. In 2013, for example, fans saw a glimpse of a winner with his first Paris-Nice victory.
Porte’s main contenders for the Giro are Rigoberto Uran, Alberto Contador and Fabio Aru
Porte’s second stage win of this year’s race got him the yellow jersey in a repeat of his success on the same mountain back in 2013. He was back in the saddle just a day after a crash. Porte nicked the second overall win at Paris-Nice by conquering the ride at stage four on the Croix de Chaubouret summit finish, but both he and team-mate Geraint Thomas, at the time third in the GC, crashed on stage six as Tony Gallopin raced to an unrivalled win.
Porte has therefore proven that he is a worthy rival, in the Giro, against Rigoberto Uran, Alberto Contador, and Fabio Aru. Already he is known to be the only climber equal to Chris Froome, on sliding up a slope. Therefore, the Giro d’Italia is possibly the best opportunity that Porte will have to access greatness. For, without a doubt, the Giro d’Italia is set to be the defining race of his career.