Strava stats reveal the power behind Alex Dowsett’s emotional Giro d’Italia stage win

The British time trial champion took potentially the biggest win of his career on stage eight 

(Image credit: Yuzuru SUNADA)

Alex Dowsett’s emotional solo ride on stage eight of the Giro d’Italia was a hugely popular victory.

The Israel Start-Up Nation rider has picked up plenty of prestigious wins in his career, but his breakaway victory in Vieste might just be the biggest yet. 

But what did it take for Dowsett to break clear of his rivals to ride clear with around 17km of the stage remaining? 

(Image credit: Strava)

The 32-year-old has shared his data on Strava to give fans an insight into the power numbers it takes to win a Giro d’Italia stage. 

Dowsett’s first huge effort came in the first 5km of the stage as he sprinted to break clear of the peloton to make it into the escape, hitting a maximum power of 1,200 watts in the process - his highest power output from the day.

The racing didn’t let up then, as the breakaway group then rode full gas to stay away from the bunch and extend their advantage to a sustainable gap. 

Onto the major climb of the day and Dowsett held a steady power at around 300w to stay with the group.

The pace began to ramp up in the final 30km, before Dowsett’s decisive move 17km from the line, which started with a 900w sprint to get clear of the break.

Dowsett then averaged 350w (around 4.67w/kg) for the final 24 minutes of the race, which allowed him to carry off the victory more than a minute ahead of his companions.

His maximum five-second power over the course of the day was 1,031w, while his five-minute power peak was 402w. 

Dowsett put out 370w for 10 minutes, while his 20 and 30-minute maximums were 250w, while his average heart-rate was 136bpm and a max of 175. 

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The Essex-born rider took plenty of Strava KoMs in the process including on the 26km Vieste finishing circuit, with a time of 35-42, ahead of Salvatore Puccio (Ineos Grenadiers) with a time of 37 minutes.   

But the effort clearly took it's toll on Dowsett, when then finished the following stage to Roccaroso dead last in 160th place, 40 minutes down on the stage winner.

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Alex Ballinger is editor of BikeBiz magazine, the leading publication for the UK cycle industry, and is the former digital news editor for CyclingWeekly.com. After gaining experience in local newsrooms, national newspapers and in digital journalism, Alex found his calling in cycling, first as a reporter, then as news editor responsible for Cycling Weekly's online news output, and now as the editor of BikeBiz. Since pro cycling first captured his heart during the 2010 Tour de France (specifically the Contador-Schleck battle) Alex covered three Tours de France, multiple editions of the Tour of Britain, and the World Championships, while both writing and video presenting for Cycling Weekly. He also specialises in fitness writing, often throwing himself into the deep end to help readers improve their own power numbers.  Away from the desk, Alex can be found racing time trials, riding BMX and mountain bikes, or exploring off-road on his gravel bike. He’s also an avid gamer, and can usually be found buried in an eclectic selection of books.