Kelderman blames disc brakes after losing 10 minutes at the Giro d'Italia

With the Giro d’Italia off to a strong start, Wilco Kelderman’s GC challenge was nullified on Stage 9, with the Dutchman attributing some of the blame to the disc brakes.

Kelderman, who finished fifth and seventh on the first two stages in Hungary, lost contact with the main group ahead of the final blockhouse climb, where he lost more than 10 minutes.

The Bora-Hansgrohe rider struggled up the steep 13.6km climb and later credited back pain as the cause of his struggles, but it was a mechanical issue that had him rearfoot before the climb had even started.

Kelderman had to stop twice on the descent from Passo Lanciano and change his bike both times. He apparently suffered a broken spoke, which he believed was caused by his disc brakes overheating.

“During the descent of the penultimate climb, a spoke broke off my bike. I think the disc brakes get very hot and then those spokes get warm,” Kelderman told Dutch outlet AD.

“They just collapsed because of the pressure because it was a very fast descent.”

Disc rotors increase temperature under hard braking and while they are designed not to overheat, this has been cited as a problem by those reluctant to adopt the new technology, such as Chris Froome.

Kelderman was already down the field when the blockhouse climb began and he was largely left to fend for himself while the rest of the overall contenders followed the train of the Ineos Grenadiers.

“I had to change bikes twice and then I was exhausted before the climb started. Then I knew it wasn’t going to work anymore,” he said. “I had back pain too, so it wasn’t my day. It just sucks.”

Kelderman is now out of contention for the overall title, although his teammate Jai Hindley – who joined him on the final Giro podium in 2020 after a controversial penultimate stage when both rode for DSM – won the stage.

Kelderman, whose Giro preparations were hampered by a bad crash and concussion at Liège-Bastogne-Liège, will now turn his attention to stage wins.

“Physically it’s okay now, but I’ve got some pain. It was a short time to come back. The first stages went well, then people quickly think I’m okay, but now it’s just beginning.

“I’m glad Jai won and that the team is in good shape. The Giro isn’t over yet. Maybe I can still go for a stage win. The preparation just wasn’t good. One hopes it’s good enough, but you know.” it’s going to be difficult. This is a pity. It’s also a fair sport.”