1 Jun 2009

Russian cyclist takes out Giro d'Italia

11:48 am on 1 June 2009

The Russian cyclist Denis Menchov survived a fall on a rain-hit final stage to win the Giro d'Italia in dramatic fashion in Rome.

The Rabobank rider had a 20-second lead before the time-trial over Italian Danilo Di Luca.

Menchov tumbled on a straight stretch in the last kilometre, but kept his cool and crossed the finish line near the Coliseum with the 10th best time.

He took the Giro with a 41-second margin of victory to add the title to his honours list after winning the Tour of Spain in 2007 and 2005.

American Lance Armstrong, gaining fitness for a tilt at an eighth Tour de France title in July after coming out of retirement, finished 12th.