Spaniard Carlos Sastre staged a stunning late charge to win the 16th stage of the Giro d'Italia, while Russia's Denis Menchov still topped the overall standings after finishing second.

Stage 16 Results
1 Carlos Sastre (Spa) Cervelo Test Team - 7.11.54
2 Denis Menchov (Rus) Rabobank - 0.25
3 Danilo Di Luca (Ita) LPR Brakes - Farnese Vini - 0.26
4 Ivan Basso (Ita) Liquigas - 0.29
5 Stefano Garzelli (Ita) Acqua & Sapone - Caffe Mokambo - 1.19
6 Francesco Masciarelli (Ita) Acqua & Sapone - Caffe Mokambo - 1.21
7 Franco Pellizotti (Ita) Liquigas
8 Tadej Valjavec (Slo) AG2R La Mondiale - 2.11
9 Jose Serpa (Col) Serramenti PVC Diquigiovanni-Androni Giocattoli - 2.35
10 Lance Armstrong (USA) Astana - 2.51

General Classification After Stage 16
1 Denis Menchov (Rus) Rabobank - 70.06.30
2 Danilo Di Luca (Ita) LPR Brakes - Farnese Vini - 0.39
3 Carlos Sastre (Spa) Cervelo Test Team - 2.19
4 Franco Pellizotti (Ita) Liquigas - 3.08
5 Ivan Basso (Ita) Liquigas - 3.19
6 Levi Leipheimer (USA) Astana - 3.21
7 Michael Rogers (Aus) Team Columbia - Highroad - 5.54
8 Stefano Garzelli (Ita) Acqua & Sapone - Caffe Mokambo - 8.21
9 David Arroyo (Spa) Caisse d'Epargne - 8.39
10 Tadej Valjavec (Slo) AG2R La Mondiale - 8.47

Full Results here

Jersey Standings:
- Denis Menchov
- Danilo Di Luca
- Stefano Garzelli
- Kevin Seeldrayers

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Links to news sites...

"Carlos Sastre wins key 16th stage of Giro

MONTE PETRANO, Italy (AP) - Lance Armstrong's preparation for the Tour de France is going so well, the seven-time Tour winner put aside his own ambitions to help a struggling teammate.

On a day when the thermometer soared to 100 degrees, Armstrong was riding with the race favorites up the final climb of the 16th stage of the Giro d'Italia on Monday when he realized that fellow Astana rider Levi Leipheimer had dropped behind.

Armstrong looked over his shoulder to see where his teammate was and slowed to escort Leipheimer to the finish.

Armstrong and Leipheimer finished 2 minutes, 51 seconds behind stage winner Carlos Sastre. Denis Menchov crossed second, 25 seconds after Sastre, and retained the overall leader's pink jersey." Read more from the AP...

"Tour champion Sastre wins epic Giro stage

(CNN) -- Tour de France champion Carlos Sastre came home alone to win his first-ever stage in the Giro d'Italia on Monday, a gruelling 237km slog from Pergola to Monte Petrano in the Appenine mountains, to put himself in contention for overall victory.

The Spaniard powered away from his rivals on the final 10.4km climb of Monte Petrano, catching Yaroslav Popovych and Damiano Cunego -- the last two members of an early breakway -- in the process, after over seven hours in the saddle.

The 16th stage victory lifted Sastre up to third in the overall standings, just two minutes and 19 seconds behind Denis Menchov, who retained his race leader's pink jersey after finishing second on the day.

Menchov crossed the line 25 seconds behind 33-year-old Sastre, with Danilo Di Luca following the Russian home to remain second in the general classification, 39 seconds adrift." Read more from CNN International...

""I came here for a fight": Sastre launches bid for victory
Six days from Rome, Menchov, Di Luca still top two on GC
By Anthony Tan in Monte Petrano, Cagli, Italy

Exactly one week ago, defending Tour de France champion Carlos Sastre (Cervelo Test Team) told Cyclingnews that he was a man "that can decide in the moment". After 230 kilometres and close to seven hours in the saddle, that moment happened Monday during the sixteenth stage of the Centenary Giro d'Italia.

On a 10.4km ascent that from bottom to top never really let up, the flyweight Spaniard chose his moment very carefully indeed. Six kilometres from the line, he broke free of maglia rosa Denis Menchov (Rabobank), Danilo Di Luca (LPR) and Ivan Basso (Liquigas), who had earlier tried his own attack. The remnants of two early breakaways were all that stood between Sastre's 60-kilo body, with his sub-seven kilo Cervelo bike, and victory.

But Sastre wasn't thinking so much about the stage win. He was thinking he could win the whole shebang. "I'm here to win the Giro," he said." Read more from

Photo credit - CorVos