Goss had a perfect lead out on Stage 1 of the Giro d’Italia; Viviani can beat his ‘bars all he wants – but Cav is King.

The QuickStep boys did their job early but it all went mass critical on that last lap. Steegmans was with Cavendish coming into the final, then seemed to have a mechanical – it was all down to Mark.

He jumped the GreenEdge train, eased out of the box and proved yet again that he’s the fastest man alive.

I’ll even forgive him for the ‘f*** it!’ when he was speaking to Dan Lloyd after the finish.

No caveats, he’s the best.

Giro d'Italia
Mark Cavendish take the first stage and the Maglia Rosa. Photo©TeamOPQS/Tim de Waele

Naples

It was dark when Dave and I drove into the place for the penultimate stage of the 2009 Giro.

The traffic was crazy and sat-nav couldn’t find the hotel due to road works of Edinburgh Trams proportions; so we had to go round the block a time or two.

Hookers on street corners; drug dealers in the shadows; kids scavenging in rubbish skips then laying their spoils out on the street to try and sell them.

Welcome to Naples.

It’s a scary town; a wee bit less menacing in the daylight but the driving is even worse when the sun comes up.

Claudio Corti told us, next morning; ‘Naples is not Italy!’ – that wasn’t the last time we’d hear folks from the North tell us that.

[pullquote]Sir Bradley’s lack of results this year means nothing.[/pullquote]

It looked good on the tele for stage one, though; the sunshine, the sea, Vesuvius, everyone riding brand new kit – and all that pink.

Despite the millions of words written about the contenders, there are just two men who can win this Giro – Nibali and Wiggins.

Sir Bradley’s lack of results this year means nothing.

Whilst Sky’s scientific approach may seem soulless to those from the ‘Old School’ – like me – and led them to a lack lustre Classics campaign, where you have to expect the unexpected; for stage racing there’s comfort in the numbers.

Wiggins seems relaxed and confident and at the press conference has been telling us that his numbers are good.

For ‘good’ read ‘other worldly’ to those who don’t live a monastic lifestyle at high altitude.

He could be in pink as early as tomorrow, after the TTT and should certainly be so after the long stage eight time trial.

Giro d'Italia
As well as the presentation girls, Cavendish was joined on the podium by his daughter and the designer Paul Smith. Photo©TeamOPQS/Tim de Waele

Nibali’s chances come when it rains and parcours are tricky – and in the two very tough days in the Dolomites on the final Friday (stage 19) and Saturday (stage 20).

But much can happen in three weeks and not just in the chronos and mountains . . .

Robert Millar made a good point in his pre-Giro piece on CyclingNews; perhaps it would have been better if our Knight of the Realm had kept schtum about who’s going to lead Sky in le Tour.

Now, every press conference will be peppered with questions about that vey subject – some of which are guaranteed to upset Sir Bradley’s cool.

Man of the day, Cav apart, was Cannondale’s 29 year-old Cameron Wurf who led solo for much of the stage.

Giro d'Italia
Cameron Wurf grabbed a lot of the TV time this afternoon. Photo©Bettini

Originally an Olympic rower, in 2007, his first serious year as a rider, he won the prestigious Chrono Champenois and the Oceania Games individual time trial title.

That season he rode for the US team, Priority Health; moving to Austrian team Volksbank for the following season.

In 2009 he stepped up to the top division with Mauro Gianetti’s Fuji-Servetto team in Spain.

For 2010 he was in Italy with Gianni Savio’s Androni team – with whom he rode the Giro.

He remained in Italy in 2011, moving to ‘super squadra’ Liquigas, with fifth overall in the Tour of Turkey his best result.

For season 2012 he was with Asia’s first Pro Continental team; Champion System for whom he took second in the tough, high altitude Tour of Qinghai Lake in China.

This year, he’s back on a Cannondale in lime green and doing a good job for his new team.

But really, it was all about one man – Mark Cavendish (GB & QuickStep).

Sir Brad in pink, tomorrow?

Giro d'Italia
Cavendish signed on knowing he was the favourite for the win today. Photo©Gian Mattia D’Alberto

Result - Giro d'Italia 2013 - Stage 1: Naples, 130km

Stage Result

1 Mark Cavendish (GBr) Omega Pharma-Quick Step 2:58:38
2 Elia Viviani (Ita) Cannondale Pro Cycling
3 Nacer Bouhanni (Fra) FDJ
4 Giacomo Nizzolo (Ita) RadioShack Leopard
5 Matthew Harley Goss (Aus) Orica-GreenEdge
6 Francisco José Ventoso Alberdi (Spa) Movistar Team
7 Adam Blythe (GBr) BMC Racing Team
8 Leigh Howard (Aus) Orica-GreenEdge
9 Danilo Hondo (Ger) RadioShack Leopard
10 Brett Lancaster (Aus) Orica-GreenEdge
11 John Degenkolb (Ger) Team Argos-Shimano
12 Luca Paolini (Ita) Katusha
13 Ioannis Tamouridis (Gre) Euskaltel-Euskadi
14 Diego Rosa (Ita) Androni Giocattoli
15 Ramunas Navardauskas (Ltu) Garmin-Sharp
16 Roberto Ferrari (Ita) Lampre-Merida
17 Robert Hunter (RSA) Garmin-Sharp
18 Tanel Kangert (Est) Astana Pro Team
19 Marco Marcato (Ita) Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling Team
20 Andrey Zeits (Kaz) Astana Pro Team
21 Nathan Haas (Aus) Garmin-Sharp
22 Danilo Wyss (Swi) BMC Racing Team
23 Taylor Phinney (USA) BMC Racing Team
24 Alessandro Vanotti (Ita) Astana Pro Team
25 Cadel Evans (Aus) BMC Racing Team
26 Rob Ruijgh (Ned) Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling Team
27 Arnold Jeannesson (Fra) FDJ
28 Benat Intxausti Elorriaga (Spa) Movistar Team
29 Vincenzo Nibali (Ita) Astana Pro Team
30 Dominique Rollin (Can) FDJ
31 Mauro Santambrogio (Ita) Vini Fantini-Selle Italia
32 Michele Scarponi (Ita) Lampre-Merida
33 Salvatore Puccio (Ita) Sky Procycling
34 Filippo Pozzato (Ita) Lampre-Merida
35 Giovanni Visconti (Ita) Movistar Team
36 Rafael Andriato (Bra) Vini Fantini-Selle Italia
37 Vicente Reynes Mimo (Spa) Lotto Belisol
38 José Herrada Lopez (Spa) Movistar Team
39 Adam Hansen (Aus) Lotto Belisol
40 Samuel Sanchez Gonzalez (Spa) Euskaltel-Euskadi
41 Julien Berard (Fra) Ag2R La Mondiale
42 Egoi Martinez De Esteban (Spa) Euskaltel-Euskadi
43 Juan Jose Cobo Acebo (Spa) Movistar Team
44 Jorge Azanza Soto (Spa) Euskaltel-Euskadi
45 Daniele Bennati (Ita) Team Saxo-Tinkoff
46 Nelson Filipe Santos Simoes Oliveira (Por) RadioShack Leopard
47 Iljo Keisse (Bel) Omega Pharma-Quick Step
48 Franco Pellizotti (Ita) Androni Giocattoli
49 Pieter Weening (Ned) Orica-GreenEdge
50 Jackson Rodriguez (Ven) Androni Giocattoli
51 Daniel Oss (Ita) BMC Racing Team
52 Giampaolo Caruso (Ita) Katusha
53 Simone Stortoni (Ita) Lampre-Merida
54 Fabio Aru (Ita) Astana Pro Team
55 Pavel Brutt (Rus) Katusha
56 Steven Kruijswijk (Ned) Blanco Pro Cycling Team
57 Rafal Majka (Pol) Team Saxo-Tinkoff
58 Alex Dowsett (GBr) Movistar Team
59 Leonardo Fabio Duque (Col) Colombia
60 Cristiano Salerno (Ita) Cannondale Pro Cycling
61 Carlos Alberto Betancur Gomez (Col) Ag2R La Mondiale
62 Robert Gesink (Ned) Blanco Pro Cycling Team
63 Ryder Hesjedal (Can) Garmin-Sharp
64 Bradley Wiggins (GBr) Sky Procycling
65 Stefano Pirazzi (Ita) Bardiani Valvole-CSF Inox
66 Vladimir Gusev (Rus) Katusha
67 Sonny Colbrelli (Ita) Bardiani Valvole-CSF Inox
68 Koen De Kort (Ned) Team Argos-Shimano
69 Christian Meier (Can) Orica-GreenEdge
70 Michal Golas (Pol) Omega Pharma-Quick Step
71 Sergio Luis Henao Montoya (Col) Sky Procycling
72 Francis Mourey (Fra) FDJ
73 Luke Durbridge (Aus) Orica-GreenEdge
74 Carlos Julian Quintero (Col) Colombia
75 Nicola Boem (Ita) Bardiani Valvole-CSF Inox
76 Gorka Verdugo Marcotegui (Spa) Euskaltel-Euskadi
77 Robert Kiserlovski (Cro) RadioShack Leopard
78 Kanstantsin Siutsou (Blr) Sky Procycling
79 Eros Capecchi (Ita) Movistar Team
80 Matti Breschel (Den) Team Saxo-Tinkoff
81 Daniele Pietropolli (Ita) Lampre-Merida
82 Fabio Sabatini (Ita) Cannondale Pro Cycling
83 Gert Steegmans (Bel) Omega Pharma-Quick Step
84 Dario Cataldo (Ita) Sky Procycling
85 Bruno Pires (Por) Team Saxo-Tinkoff
86 Stefano Locatelli (Ita) Bardiani Valvole-CSF Inox
87 Xabier Zandio Echaide (Spa) Sky Procycling
88 Evgeny Petrov (Rus) Team Saxo-Tinkoff
89 Ivan Santaromita (Ita) BMC Racing Team
90 Juan Manuel Garate (Spa) Blanco Pro Cycling Team
91 Yury Trofimov (Rus) Katusha
92 Gianluca Brambilla (Ita) Omega Pharma-Quick Step
93 Wilco Kelderman (Ned) Blanco Pro Cycling Team
94 Peter Stetina (USA) Garmin-Sharp
95 Fabio Felline (Ita) Androni Giocattoli
96 Sacha Modolo (Ita) Bardiani Valvole-CSF Inox
97 Gert Dockx (Bel) Lotto Belisol
98 Maarten Wynants (Bel) Blanco Pro Cycling Team
99 Stefano Garzelli (Ita) Vini Fantini-Selle Italia
100 Karsten Kroon (Ned) Team Saxo-Tinkoff
101 Cayetano José Sarmiento Tunarrosa (Col) Cannondale Pro Cycling
102 Lars Ytting Bak (Den) Lotto Belisol
103 Alessandro Proni (Ita) Vini Fantini-Selle Italia
104 Ricardo Mestre (Por) Euskaltel-Euskadi
105 Mattia Cattaneo (Ita) Lampre-Merida
106 Rafael Valls Ferri (Spa) Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling Team
107 Petr Ignatenko (Rus) Katusha
108 Luka Mezgec (Slo) Team Argos-Shimano
109 Anthony Roux (Fra) FDJ
110 Dalivier Ospina Navarro (Col) Colombia
111 Pablo Lastras Garcia (Spa) Movistar Team
112 Davide Appollonio (Ita) Ag2R La Mondiale
113 Danilo Di Luca (Ita) Vini Fantini-Selle Italia
114 Miguel Angel Rubiano Chavez (Col) Androni Giocattoli
115 Vladimir Karpets (Rus) Movistar Team
116 George Bennett (NZl) RadioShack Leopard
117 Rory Sutherland (Aus) Team Saxo-Tinkoff
118 Frederik Willems (Bel) Lotto Belisol
119 Francesco Manuel Bongiorno (Ita) Bardiani Valvole-CSF Inox
120 Francis De Greef (Bel) Lotto Belisol
121 Thomas Danielson (USA) Garmin-Sharp
122 Robert Vrecer (Slo) Euskaltel-Euskadi
123 Przemyslaw Niemiec (Pol) Lampre-Merida
124 Darwin Atapuma Hurtado (Col) Colombia
125 Rigoberto Uran Uran (Col) Sky Procycling
126 Tiago Machado (Por) RadioShack Leopard
127 Tomas Aurelio Gil Martinez (Ven) Androni Giocattoli
128 Fabio Taborre (Ita) Vini Fantini-Selle Italia
129 Guillaume Bonnafond (Fra) Ag2R La Mondiale
130 Jose Rodolfo Serpa Perez (Col) Lampre-Merida
131 Grega Bole (Slo) Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling Team
132 Frederik Veuchelen (Bel) Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling Team
133 Willem Wauters (Bel) Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling Team
134 Serge Pauwels (Bel) Omega Pharma-Quick Step
135 Matteo Rabottini (Ita) Vini Fantini-Selle Italia
136 Fredrik Carl Wilhelm Kessiakoff (Swe) Astana Pro Team
137 Hayden Roulston (NZl) RadioShack Leopard
138 Jesse Sergent (NZl) RadioShack Leopard
139 Dirk Bellemakers (Ned) Lotto Belisol
140 Dmitriy Gruzdev (Kaz) Astana Pro Team
141 Maarten Tjallingii (Ned) Blanco Pro Cycling Team
142 Kristijan Durasek (Cro) Lampre-Merida
143 Thomas Damuseau (Fra) Team Argos-Shimano
144 Paolo Longo Borghini (Ita) Cannondale Pro Cycling
145 Mads Christensen (Den) Team Saxo-Tinkoff
146 Marco Canola (Ita) Bardiani Valvole-CSF Inox
147 Paolo Tiralongo (Ita) Astana Pro Team
148 Edoardo Zardini (Ita) Bardiani Valvole-CSF Inox
149 Dmitry Kozontchuk (Rus) Katusha
150 Enrico Battaglin (Ita) Bardiani Valvole-CSF Inox
151 Valerio Agnoli (Ita) Astana Pro Team
152 Damiano Caruso (Ita) Cannondale Pro Cycling
153 Manuele Boaro (Ita) Team Saxo-Tinkoff
154 Domenico Pozzovivo (Ita) Ag2R La Mondiale
155 Fabio Andres Duarte Arevalo (Col) Colombia
156 Miguel Minguez Ayala (Spa) Euskaltel-Euskadi
157 Tobias Ludvigsson (Swe) Team Argos-Shimano
158 Ben Gastauer (Lux) Ag2R La Mondiale
159 Christian Vande Velde (USA) Garmin-Sharp
160 Svein Tuft (Can) Orica-GreenEdge
161 Alan Marangoni (Ita) Cannondale Pro Cycling
162 Jens Mouris (Ned) Orica-GreenEdge
163 Hubert Dupont (Fra) Ag2R La Mondiale
164 Paul Martens (Ger) Blanco Pro Cycling Team
165 Jarlinson Pantano (Col) Colombia
166 Robinson Eduardo Chalapud Gomez (Col) Colombia
167 Oscar Gatto (Ita) Vini Fantini-Selle Italia
168 Maurits Lammertink (Ned) Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling Team
169 Johan Le Bon (Fra) FDJ
170 Emanuele Sella (Ita) Androni Giocattoli
171 Sandy Casar (Fra) FDJ
172 Steve Morabito (Swi) BMC Racing Team
173 Angel Vicioso Arcos (Spa) Katusha
174 Sylvain Georges (Fra) Ag2R La Mondiale
175 Danny Pate (USA) Sky Procycling
176 Stephen Cummings (GBr) BMC Racing Team
177 Tiziano Dall’Antonia (Ita) Cannondale Pro Cycling
178 Kenny Dehaes (Bel) Lotto Belisol 0:00:57
179 Bert De Backer (Bel) Team Argos-Shimano 0:01:01
180 Thomas Dekker (Ned) Garmin-Sharp 0:01:05
181 Albert Timmer (Ned) Team Argos-Shimano 0:01:16
182 Yaroslav Popovych (Ukr) RadioShack Leopard
183 Klaas Lodewyck (Bel) BMC Racing Team
184 Jérôme Pineau (Fra) Omega Pharma-Quick Step 0:02:34
185 Matteo Trentin (Ita) Omega Pharma-Quick Step
186 Christian Knees (Ger) Sky Procycling 0:02:38
187 Martijn Keizer (Ned) Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling Team
188 Cameron Wurf (Aus) Cannondale Pro Cycling
189 Patrick Gretsch (Ger) Team Argos-Shimano
190 Jack Bobridge (Aus) Blanco Pro Cycling Team
191 Maxim Belkov (Rus) Katusha
192 Laurent Pichon (Fra) FDJ
193 Ji Cheng (Chn) Team Argos-Shimano
194 Pim Ligthart (Ned) Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling Team
195 Giairo Ermeti (Ita) Androni Giocattoli
196 Murilo Antonio Fischer (Bra) FDJ
197 Wilson Alexander Marentes Torres (Col) Colombia 0:03:03
198 Brian Bulgac (Ned) Lotto Belisol
199 Julien Vermote (Bel) Omega Pharma-Quick Step 0:03:05
200 Jens Keukeleire (Bel) Orica-GreenEdge
201 Edwin Alcibiades Avila Vanegas (Col) Colombia
202 Mattia Gavazzi (Ita) Androni Giocattoli
203 Manuel Belletti (Ita) Ag2R La Mondiale
204 David Millar (GBr) Garmin-Sharp
205 Francesco Chicchi (Ita) Vini Fantini-Selle Italia
206 Stef Clement (Ned) Blanco Pro Cycling Team 0:05:07
207 Pablo Urtasun Perez (Spa) Euskaltel-Euskadi

Team Classification

1 Orica-GreenEdge 8:55:54
2 BMC Racing Team
3 Garmin-Sharp
4 RadioShack Leopard
5 FDJ
6 Astana Pro Team
7 Movistar Team
8 Lampre-Merida
9 Euskaltel-Euskadi
10 Androni Giocattoli
11 Omega Pharma-Quick-Step Cycling Team
12 Katusha
13 Cannondale Pro Cycling
14 Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling Team
15 Vini Fantini-Selle Italia
16 Sky Procycling
17 Lotto Belisol
18 Team Saxo-Tinkoff
19 Team Argos-Shimano
20 Bardiani Valvole-CSF Inox
21 Blanco Pro Cycling Team
22 Ag2R La Mondiale
23 Colombia