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Utah’17 St.6: Bardiani Podium Photo Report!
Tour of Utah Stage 6: The Tour of Utah stage 6 was billed as the 'Queen Stage' of 2017 and the Bardiani-CSF duo of Giulio Ciccone and Simone Sterbini dominated the podium. There was a battle between the GC men, but with no change to the overall standings.

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Stage 6 was described by the Utah race organizers:
The Queen Stage, with its epic finish at Snowbird Resort, has always had a big impact on who wins the overall classification of the Tour. At 61 miles, the course is much shorter than previous editions. But don’t be fooled—this means riders need to handle a much harder, more dynamic race with less room for error. The stage begins, for a second time, in the shadow of Mount Timpanogos at Soldier Hollow, where Nordic competitions were held for the 2002 Olympic Winter Games. The entire area sits in the Wasatch Mountain State Park. After rolling out from the stadium at Soldier Hollow, the racers will only have a few miles around Deer Creek Reservoir before tackling the Alpine Loop, a Category 1 climb that runs beside Sundance Resort. Passing through American Fork Canyon and Timpanogos Cave National Monument, this route was first used on the Queen Stage in 2008. The route travels through the cities of Draper and Sandy before the final fireworks up Little Cottonwood Canyon to Snowbird Resort. This is the 10th consecutive year that Snowbird Resort has hosted a stage finish, with the signature climb featuring 8-12 percent gradients on the final six miles through Little Cottonwood Canyon.

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The peloton raced over the Deer Creek reservoir dam.

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The course followed the North Fork Provo River.

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The break climbing the KOM.

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Rob Britton and his Rally Cycling team on the climb.

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A fast drop from the KOM.

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Ruben Companioni went on a solo break.

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Rally Cycling protected the yellow jersey of Rob Britton.

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The GC group had their battle.

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The two Italians were looking strong.

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Bardiani's Giulio Ciccone made his attack for the stage win. Giulio Ciccone celebrated his win as his Bardiani-CSF teammate, Simone Sterbini, held on for second place.

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Overall leader, Rob Britton (Rally Cycling) finished with second placed Gavin Mannion (UnitedHealthcare) to hold his 26 second lead. Third placed, Serghei Tvetcov (Jelly Belly-Maxxis) lost 4 seconds and is now at 32 seconds with Neilson Powless (Axeon Hagens Berman) only 3 second behind him going into the final stage 7.

Overall leader, Rob Britton said after stage 6: "I was very confident going into today. I had 100 percent faith in the team. They have been fantastic this week and today was no different. We knew the downhill off American Fork Canyon was dangerous, we made it down and then assessed the situation. Bookwalter and Eisenhart took a lot of risks and were really aggressive today – and eventually paid for it. The team was phenomenal; we were never on the back foot. Colin (Joyce), Danny (Pate) and Evan (Huffman) reeled went full gas, and at the base, we were only back 15 seconds on the Bookwalter and Eisenhart group. On the climb, I never felt like I was under pressure. I felt like I had the race under control."

The final stage 7 returns to the original Salt Lake City circuit. With the start/finish line on the east side of the Utah State Capitol, this circuit is the same one used in 2013 and is a favorite of the racers and spectators alike. There will be 11 laps, including two intermediate sprints and a time bonus at the finish for the top three riders, so the overall race champion may not be decided until the very end.

# You can see more of Darrell Parks' work at his web-site HERE. #

Tour of Utah Stage 6 Result:
1. Giulio Ciccone (Ita) Bardiani-CSF in 2:45:38
2. Simone Sterbini (Ita) Bardiani-CSF at 0:35
3. Neilson Powless (USA) Axeon Hagens Berman at 0:41
4. Gavin Mannion (USA) UnitedHealthcare at 0:44
5. Robert Britton (Can) Rally Cycling
6. Serghei Tvetcov (Rou) Jelly Belly-Maxxis at 0:48
7. Manuel Senni (Ita) BMC at 1:14
8. James Piccoli (Can) Elevate-KHS at 1:19
9. Chris Butler (USA) Caja Rural-Seguros RGA at 1:27
10. Brent Bookwalter (USA) BMC at 2:06.

Tour of Utah Overall After Stage 6:
1. Robert Britton (Can) Rally Cycling in 20:07:43
2. Gavin Mannion (USA) UnitedHealthcare at 0:26
3. Serghei Tvetcov (Rou) Jelly Belly-Maxxis at 0:32
4. Neilson Powless (USA) Axeon Hagens Berman at 0:35
5. Brent Bookwalter (USA) BMC at 2:06
6. Giulio Ciccone (Ita) Bardiani-CSF at 2:16
7. Jonny Clarke (Aus) UnitedHealthcare at 2:28
8. Chris Butler (USA) Caja Rural-Seguros RGA at 2:34
9. James Piccoli (Can) Elevate-KHS at 2:38
10. Sepp Kuss (USA) Rally Cycling at 2:55.

 

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