Roglic keeps his poker face as Giro d’Italia mountains loom large

While Vincenzo Nibali was venting his frustrations about Primoz Roglic in a truck stop car park on the outskirts of Pinerolo after stage 12 of the Giro d’Italia, the Slovenian rider continued to keep his emotions, his real state of form and his race tactics hidden away like a world class poker player.

Roglic and his Jumbo-Visma team perhaps lack Nibali’s Grand Tour experience but they are ready for a fight in the mountains that begin in earnest on Friday. Thursday’s stage to Pinerolo and the late Montoso climb were just a warm-up for the next three days.

After finishing 24th in Pinerolo, one place ahead of Nibali in the group of overall contenders, Roglic rode alone to the Jumbo-Visma team bus. He opted not to warm down on the rollers and took a shower before talking about his day.

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He was evasive as ever, often looking away from the camera to gather his thoughts. Perhaps even playing a tactic game of fake on his rivals, Roglic revealed he did not have a good day on the first climb of this year’s Giro d’Italia.

“It was the first big climb. I didn’t feel really good, so I wasn’t going to attack and go solo, but in the end it was okay. We’ve had quite a lot of rest days and it’s hard to start racing again but today we (finally) started,” he said without a drop of emotion.

“But I was good enough to stay with the other guys. It was nice to do a climb, to warm up for the bigger climbs.”

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