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Page last updated at 17:29 GMT, Wednesday, 27 May 2009 18:29 UK

Pellizotti secures Giro stage win

Franco Pellizotti
Pellizotti leaves the crowd in no doubt as to who has won the stage

Italian Franco Pellizotti captured the 17th stage of the Giro d'Italia from Chieti to Blockhaus on Wednesday.

The Liquigas rider held off several top names to clock two hours 21 minutes six seconds on the 83km mountainous route.

Lance Armstrong was in the small leading group for a short while before dropping back to finish in 10th place.

Russian Denis Menchov was in the leading pack and retained the overall leader's pink jersey in the 21-stage event, which concludes on Sunday.

The Abruzzo region was hit by a major earthquake last month, which killed almost 300 people.

Some riders visited the worst-hit city of L'Aquila during Tuesday's rest day, while many are wearing pink armbands to raise funds for the area.

Stage 17 was shortened slightly so that authorities did not have to clear snow from the mountains around Blockhaus and could concentrate on earthquake relief work.

Some of the crowd, keen followers of local rider Danilo Di Luca, booed Menchov but the Italian said: "These are my fans, worse things happen in football stadiums."

Pre-race favourite and 2006 champion Ivan Basso again finished just outside the podium places and is 3:28 adrift ahead of Thursday's 18th stage, a 182km route from Sulmona to Benevento.

Stage 17 results (Wednesday):

1. Franco Pellizotti (Ita/Liquigas) 2hrs 21mins 6secs
2. Stefano Garzelli (Ita/Acqua & Sapone) +42
3. Danilo Di Luca (Ita/Team LPR) +43
4. Denis Menchov (Rus/Rabobank) +48
5. Ivan Basso (Ita/Liquigas) +57
6. Marzio Bruseghin (Ita/Lampre ) +1:54
7. Sylwester Szmyd (Pol/Liquigas ) +1:55
8. Michael Rogers (Aus/Columbia ) +1:59

Overall standings:

1. Denis Menchov (Rus/Rabobank) 72hrs 28mins 24secs
2. Danilo Di Luca (Ita/Team LPR ) +26
3. Franco Pellizotti (Ita/Liquigas ) +2:00
4. Ivan Basso (Ita/Liquigas) +3:28
5. Carlos Sastre (Spa/Cervelo) +3:30
6. Levi Leipheimer (US/Astana ) +4:32
7. Michael Rogers (Aus/Columbia ) +5:54
8. Stefano Garzelli (Ita/Acqua & Sapone ) +8:03

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see also
Sastre up to third after Giro win
25 May 09 |  Cycling
Bertagnolli earns Giro stage win
24 May 09 |  Cycling
Gerrans climbs to Giro stage win
23 May 09 |  Cycling
Team pulls Cavendish out of Giro
22 May 09 |  Cycling
Cavendish takes third Giro stage
22 May 09 |  Cycling
Speedy Menchov steals Giro lead
21 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

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