There is a new maglia rosa (pink jersey) wearer in the 2012 Giro d'Italia following Stage 10 on Tuesday. Joaquim Rodriguez won Stage 10 following an uphill battle to Assisi with a finish time of 4:25:05, two seconds better than Bartosz Huzarski and Giovanni Visconti. And with the time bonus, Rodriguez has also captured the maglia rosa from Garmin Barracuda's Ryder Hesjedal.
Hesjedal went from a nine-second lead to a second-place gap of 17 seconds behind Rodriguez.
The route picked up with 10 km left to go, as Podium Cafe writes:
The fight for position was fierce, especially as Rodriguez and GC leader Ryder Hesjedal - almost the shortest and tallest riders in the field respectively - engaged in a comical tussle for a wheel.
Early attacks went and fizzled on the first ramp of the climb, which maxed out at 15%. As the road tilted downhill and the lead riders looked at each other, Sky's Rigoberto Uran launched a cheeky attack and was joined by AG2R's John Gadret. The descent, it was too gradual and not technical enough to really open up a gap on the attentive Katusha boys, though, and Daniel Moreno led Rodriguez under the red kite as the road tilted up once again.
By the final kilometer, Rodriguez broke through for the lead and Hesjedal came in sixth.
On Wednesday, the cyclists will be back on a flat stage. Can Hesjedal narrow or overcome the gap?
Here is a look at the top 10 for Stage 10:
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For more on the 2012 Giro d'Italia, stick with SB Nation Denver and visit cycling blog Podium Cafe.