Yates & Mitchelton-SCOTT retain pink jersey for another day at Giro d’ItaliaFri 11 May 2018
Mitchelton-SCOTT successfully piloted race leader Simon Yates through a sprint finish on stage seven of the Giro d’Italia to retain the pink leader’s jersey for another day.
The flat stage, won by Sam Bennett (Bora-Hansgrohe), was designed for a bunch finish and as a result the sprint teams took responsibility for much of the day, relieving Mitchelton-SCOTT of much of their duties at the head of the peloton.
On just the second attempt of the day, a breakaway of three riders rode clear in the first ten kilometres.
Maxim Belkov (Team Katusha), Markel Irizar Aranburu (Trek-Segafredo) and Davide Ballerini (Androni Giocattoli-Sidermec) posed no threat on the general classification and allowed Mitchelton-SCOTT to ride an easy tempo on the front with Svein Tuft.
With a small group, no overall threats and a stage primed to conclude in a bunch sprint, it didn’t take long for sprint teams to take control of the policing duties.
Quicksteps Floors and Willier Wilier Triestina-Selle Italia sent riders up the front early, before EF Education First -Drapac also contributed later in the day.
A fast finale meant positioning was key, but the likes of Sam Bewley and Roman Kreuziger ensured their leaders in Yates and Esteban Chaves were positioned well to cross the line safely on bunch time.
Simon Yates – Race leader:|
“I was a bit nervous. It was a big moment for me to wear the pink jersey, one of the biggest of my career, but it was a special day and I really enjoyed it.”
“It’s my first time leading a grand tour, but with the breakaway going away quite easy it was a bit more relaxed and a nice day.”
“I know nothing of the next two stages except what is written in the book, but our directors know the climbs very well as do a couple of our riders, so for me it’s not a problem.”
“It’s a little more difficult to attack now I am in the jersey, and I need to see if I have the same legs. The first climb nerves are out of the way. Sometimes the first climb doesn’t go as well as expected, but then as the race goes on riders become much better so we will have to wait and see how our rivals are feeling.”
Giro d’Italia - Stage 7 Results:
1. Sam Bennett (Bora-Hansgrohe) 3:45:27
2. Elia Viviani (Quickstep Floors) ST
3. Niccolo Bonifazio (Bahrain-Merida) ST
24. Simon Yates (Mitchelton-SCOTT) ST
Giro d’Italia – General Classification after Stage 7:
1. Simon Yates (Mitchelton-SCOTT) 26:31:30
2. Tom Dumoulin (Team Sunweb) +0:16
3. Esteban Chaves (Mitchelton-SCOTT) +0:26
Photo courtesy of Getty Images.