Riding his TCR Advanced SL Disc team bike with a CADEX WheelSystem, Černý was aggressive from the start. He helped launch an early breakaway, stayed at the front of the action, and made a timely move to score the biggest win of his career.
“It’s unbelievable,” Černý said. “I cannot describe it, it was just incredible. I try so much and today I have achieved my dream. I am really happy for my team, my family and my girlfriend.”
Originally scheduled to be 258km, the longest stage of the three-week grand tour, the stage was shortened due to a rider protest at the start. After being informed the night before that 5km would be added to the original 253km length because of a bridge collapse, riders voiced their concerns about consecutive long stages and transfers. Discussions continued the morning before the stage, and with heavy rain falling, it was ultimately decided to shorten the stage and make the official start in Abbiategrasso instead of Morbegno.
Once racing was underway, Černy, the national time trial champion in the Czech Republic, helped launch an early breakaway joined by Belgian Victor Campanaerts (NTT) and Simon Pellaud of Switzerland. Those three were eventually joined by 11 other riders who would battle for the win at the end.
“It was a strange day and it was a very difficult moment,” said Černý, who wore the Giant Rev Pro helmet to take the win. “We had three really heavy days in the mountains in the last days and today, it was raining full gas. I was really happy the organizer shortened the stage but it was still a hard day.”
The win added to Černý’s impressive showing in the Giro’s two previous time trial stages, where he finished 6th (Stage 1) and 5th (Stage 14).
“This Giro d’Italia has been really special for me,” Černý said. “I was happy with my results in the time trials and I’m looking forward to the final one in Milan. But to win a road stage is really special. I enjoy the fight in the breakaway because it’s a lottery. I was happy that I had good legs after the Stelvio yesterday and I’m happy I was able to show what I can do.”
The 103rd edition of the Giro d’Italia, pushed back from its usual spring slot on the calendar due to COVID-19 protocols, will finish Sunday in Milan.