Trek’s Julian Arredondo celebrated a solo victory atop Valsugana at the Giro d’Italia in what was a day for Colombian riders with Fabio Duarte finishing second and Nairo Quintana holding onto the maglia rosa.
Sky’s Philip Deignan showed an exceptional zeal placing third on the summit finish – 37 seconds behind winner Arredondo who marked his maiden Grand Tour stage victory in the blue jersey of the mountain classification leader.
Deignan is the first Irishman to finish on the podium of a Giro stage since Hall of Fame inductee Stephen Roche placed third in a time trial at the 1989 edition of the race.
The 171km mountain stage saw a shake-up in the general classification with Cadel Evans (BMC) dropping from third to ninth overall having lost contact on the 16.85km final climb that featured maximum gradients of 14 per cent.
Deignan and teammate Dario Cataldo were part of a 14-man break that approached the base of the last ascent together. The main group, which Quintana’s Movistar team controlled, was more than six minutes adrift.
Quintana marked moves from Rigoberto Uran (Omega Pharma-Quick Step), who is second overall, and Pierre Rolland (Europcar), who rode himself into third on the general classification today, but was otherwise composed ahead of tomorrow’s mountain time trial.
Thomas De Gendt (Omega Pharma-Quick Step) made a notable attack from the front group at the base of the climb and stayed away for a time before the Colombian duo caught and surpassed him, with Deignan following shortly after.
Italian Fabio Aru (Astana) made up a few seconds making a move from the remnants of the main group for ninth with Quintana leading the rest across the line for 10th.
Giro d’Italia 2014, stage 18: Belluno to Valsugana, 171km
1. Julian David Arredondo Moreno (Col) Trek 4-49-51
2. Fabio Andres Duarte Arevalo (Col) Colombia at 17 secs
3. Philip Deignan (Irl) Sky at 37 secs
4. Franco Pellizotti (Ita) Androni Giocattoli at 1-20
5. Edoardo Zardini (Ita) Bardiani-CSF at 1-24
6. Thomas De Gendt (Bel) Omega Pharma-Quick-Step at 1-38
7. Ivan Basso (Ita) Cannondale at 1-43
8. Dario Cataldo (Ita) Sky at 1-59
9. Fabio Aru (Ita) Astana at 2-43
10. Nairo Alexander Quintana Rojas (Col) Movistar at 2-46
Overall classification after stage 18
1. Nairo Alexander Quintana Rojas (Col) Movistar 77-58-08
2. Rigoberto Uran Uran (Col) Omega Pharma-Quick at 1-41
3. Pierre Rolland (Fra) Europcar at 3-29
4. Fabio Aru (Ita) Astana at 3-31
5. Rafal Majka (Pol) Tinkoff-Saxo
6. Domenico Pozzovivo (Ita) AG2R La Mondiale at 3-52
7. Ryder Hesjedal (Can) Garmin Sharp at 4-32
8. Wilco Kelderman (Ned) Belkin at 4-37
9. Cadel Evans (Aus) BMC at 4-59
10. Robert Kiserlovski (Cro) Trek at 8-33