He returned in time for the Critérium du Dauphiné, taking fifth place, 1-37 back on his team mate Jakob Fuglsang.
He drew attention at the 2017 Tour de France when he attacked on the summit finish to La Planche des Belles Filles, on stage five. This led to a stage win, and left the prime GC contenders facing havoc in his wake as their group splintered to give way to the first major gaps in the overall. Here, Aru moved into second place behind Chris Froome (Team Sky).
Stage 18 saw Aru’s chances of becoming the Tour de France champ all but diminish after dropping down to fifth and losing more time on his rivals. He was never able to claw back the difference, eventually rolling into Paris in fifth on the GC, behind Team Sky’s Mikel Landa.
Fabio Aru’s career to date
Having signed for the Astana team in 2012, Fabio Aru has steadily established himself as Grand Tour contender, making his breakthrough ride in the 2014 Giro d’Italia where he won a stage and finished third overall.
In 2015, Aru went one better in the Giro and won two stages and placed second overall behind the far more established Grand Tour star Alberto Contador, just one minute and 53 seconds behind.