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Page last updated at 16:06 GMT, Thursday, 21 May 2009 17:06 UK

Speedy Menchov steals Giro lead

Denis Menchov
Menchov was in great shape in the time trial

Denis Menchov produced a superb display to win the 60km time trial at the Giro d'Italia and take the leader's pink jersey from Danilo Di Luca.

The Russian Rabobank rider finished one minute and 54 seconds ahead of Di Luca and now holds a 34-second overall lead.

American Levi Leipheimer leapt to third in the standings after finishing second with Briton Bradley Wiggins coming home seventh on the hilly course.

Lance Armstrong is up to 12th overall after finishing 13th quickest.

Friday's 176 km 13th stage between Lido di Camairoe and Firenze offers just two small climbs and so should appeal to the sprinters.

606: DEBATE

Di Luca is hopeful he can regain the lead in the cycling classic.

"I'm happy," said Di Luca. "Menchov rode very well but I'm happy. I hope to take back the pink jersey as soon as possible.

"The Giro is open. Anything can still happen."

Meanwhile, Leipheimer is also confident of his chances.

"On this course, 20 seconds behind Menchov is not much," said Leipheimer.

"I still think it's possible for me to win the Giro, even if we're missing Chris Horner."


Stage 12 results (Thursday):

1. Denis Menchov (Russia / Rabobank ) 1 hr 34 mins 29 secs
2. Levi Leipheimer (U.S. / Astana ) +20"
3. Stefano Garzelli (Italy / Acqua & Sapone ) +1:03"
4. Janez Brajkovic (Slovenia / Astana ) +1:14"
5. Franco Pellizotti (Italy / Liquigas ) +1:27"
6. Danilo Di Luca (Italy / Team LPR ) +1:54"
7. Bradley Wiggins (Britain / Garmin ) +1:59"
8. Gabriele Bosisio (Italy / Team LPR ) +2:04"
9. Jose Serpa (Colombia / Diquigiovanni ) +2:13"
10. Marzio Bruseghin (Italy / Lampre ) +2:17"

Others:
12. Carlos Sastre (Spain / Cervelo ) +2:18"
13. Lance Armstrong (U.S. / Astana ) +2:26"
14. Michael Rogers (Australia / Columbia ) +2:46"

Overall standings

1. Denis Menchov (Russia / Rabobank ) 50 hrs 27 mins 17 secs
2. Danilo Di Luca (Italy / Team LPR ) +34"
3. Levi Leipheimer (U.S. / Astana ) +40"
4. Franco Pellizotti (Italy / Liquigas ) +2:00"
5. Carlos Sastre (Spain / Cervelo ) +2:52"
6. Michael Rogers (Australia / Columbia ) +2:59"
7. Ivan Basso (Italy / Liquigas ) +3:00"
8. Gilberto Simoni (Italy / Diquigiovanni ) +4:38"

Others:

12. Lance Armstrong (U.S /Astana) +6:34



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see also
Cavendish wins second Giro stage
20 May 09 |  Cycling
Di Luca extends overall Giro lead
19 May 09 |  Cycling
Protest overshadows Cavendish win
17 May 09 |  Cycling
Horrillo out of coma after crash
17 May 09 |  Cycling
Hagen sprints to Giro stage win
15 May 09 |  Cycling
Scarponi takes Giro stage victory
14 May 09 |  Cycling
Menchov powers to Giro stage win
13 May 09 |  Cycling
Di Luca takes Giro fourth stage
12 May 09 |  Cycling
Petacchi grabs overall Giro lead
11 May 09 |  Cycling
Cavendish keeps overall Giro lead
10 May 09 |  Cycling
Cavendish nabs historic Giro lead
09 May 09 |  Cycling
Olympics not priority - Cavendish
04 May 09 |  Cycling


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