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Cadel Evans and the peloton suffered through snow and cold on Tuesday's stage. (©BMC/Graham Watson.)
Cadel Evans and the peloton suffered through snow and cold on Tuesday's stage. (©BMC/Graham Watson.)

Giro d'Italia, Stage 16: Day Of Survival

27. May 2014

Cadel Evans fought his way to 10th place Tuesday on a cold, snowy and wet mountainous stage of the Giro d'Italia. But the BMC Racing Team's leader slipped from second to third in the standings as the overall lead changed hands.

Challenging Conditions
Nairo Quintana (Movistar Team) soloed to win the 139-kilometer stage and take the maglia rosa from Rigoberto Uran (Omega Pharma-Quick Step), who dropped to second overall, 1:41 back. Evans arrived 4:48 after Quintana and is now 3:21 off the lead and among five riders grouped within 27 seconds of each other in the overall standings. "In the final, I started cramping," Evans said. "I was limping on one leg all the way home. It is a pity. Normally I am reasonably good in these extreme conditions. But when I can't see the road, I can't descend down it. When I have to pedal with one leg, I can't go uphill. So it was really a day of conservation and survival." The challenging conditions were evident in the stage results: Only 15 riders finished within 10 minutes of the stage winner and 122 of the 160 riders left in the race conceded 30 minutes or more.

Not Giving Up
Evans said his battle began right from the start in Ponte di Legno up the snow-lined Gavia pass. "The first climb, I was over-dressed," he said. "The first descent, I couldn't see through the snow. The second climb – the Stelvio – I was fine. But on the downhill I started getting cramps. It seems ridiculous today – it is below zero and I am dehydrated. But we were either going uphill or downhill, so the opportunities to drink were limited." Evans said with five stages remaining – including Friday's 26.8-km uphill time trial – he is not losing hope of maintaining or improving his position. "We came here with big intentions and we came here to give absolutely our best," he said. "We have all worked very, very hard. I think we have seen in the last couple of days that anything and everything has happened in this Giro. And anything can still happen. That is what makes the Giro so dramatic."

Listen to complete comments from Evans on the BMC Racing Team's special Giro d'Italia Audio Line.

See photos from the race in the BMC Racing Team Flickr gallery.