From good to disappointed to good again. Tom Dumoulin‘s feelings about this year’s Giro d’Italia have varied considerably on the crucial stages in the race so far, but the Sunweb leader has reached the first rest day feeling, finally, satisfied with how he’s performing.
“It’s not going better, but it’s going as well as last year,” was how the defending champion summed up his sensations on Monday afternoon.
This time last year, after the Blockhaus stage, Dumoulin was in third place, 30 seconds down on Nairo Quintana (Movistar) and two seconds adrift of Thibaut Pinot (Groupama-FDJ). This time around, he is again third behind two climbers, with a 38-second deficit on Simon Yates (Mitchelton-Scott) and six seconds behind Yates’ teammate Esteban Chaves. The Dutchman has everything to play for, then, once more and is in almost exactly as good a situation as in 2017.
What has varied, though, is Dumoulin’s feelings about his 2018 Giro. His performance started on the highest note possible in winning the Jerusalem time trial. But since then, Dumoulin has had a greater degree of inner doubt about how his climbing was rating; he explained until he reached the Gran Sasso, where he lost a mere 12 seconds to Yates, Pinot and the other best climbers. That, if nothing else, reassured him all was well.
“On Etna, I was slightly disappointed, and also I didn’t have very good sensations,” Dumoulin explained. “I could still follow through, so the next day I thought that maybe I was too self-critical after that, maybe it wasn’t so bad.
“But after Gran Sasso, I felt better, like I could give something more. So that was good to see, I’m coming into the rest day with a good feeling.”
You can read more at Cyclingnews.com