Giro d'Italia: Bernal seals second Grand Tour title

By Sports Desk May 30, 2021

Egan Bernal wrapped up victory in the Giro d'Italia on Sunday, showing consummate composure in the final stage on the road to Milan.

INEOS Grenadiers rider Bernal, who had finished second behind Damiano Caruso in the penultimate stage, was a favourite heading into this year's race and the 24-year-old duly delivered having worn the maglia rosa since stage nine.

He sealed an impressive general classification victory by one minute and 29 seconds.

Bernal, now a two-time Grand Tour champion after a successful Tour de France in 2019, needed to keep his cool in Sunday's closing time trial.

He began the 30.3-kilometre test from Senago with a 1:59 minute lead over Caruso, who celebrated his maiden Grand Tour stage win on Saturday, but Bernal only gave up 30 seconds in a closing stage that was won by his team-mate and reigning time trial world champion Filippo Ganna.

Ganna beat Remi Cavagna (Deceuninck-Quick Step) by 12 seconds, despite needing to change his bike mid-race.

Cavagna was hindered by a crash on the final bend, with the Frenchman losing control and flying over his handlebars, and despite being back on the bike within 10 seconds, it was a mistake which handed Ganna a second stage win of the Giro.

But the glory was all Bernal's, the Colombian able to take his time on the final stretch as he celebrated a supreme display over the three-week event.

It is INEOS' second successive victory at the Giro, following Tao Geoghegan Hart's triumph last year.

Simon Yates, another pre-race favourite, finished in third place in the general classification, 4:15 back from Bernal, who is going from strength to strength.

"The maglia rosa is special. It's the most beautiful race in the world's most beautiful place," Bernal told reporters.

"I'll never forget this Giro, how I won my first ever stage and the way I won it, with attacks and sprinting on the flat for bonus seconds against Remco Evenepoel. That's who I am and the cycling I like.

"In this race I found the freedom to race as I like to do. So winning in this final time trial is special.

"I was just focused on my effort and was just thinking I can't do a mistake, I didn't want to lose the Giro in one corner. I was starting to push in the parts where I could push, but in the corners, don't take any risks.

"It was special, [seeing] a lot of Colombian flags everywhere and all the people cheering for me. When I finished and realised I won, it was an incredible feeling. I can't describe what I'm feeling."

STAGE RESULT

1. Filippo Ganna (INEOS Grenadiers) 0:33:48
2. Remi Cavagna (Deceuninck-Quick Step) +00:12
3. Edoardo Affini (Jumbo-Visma) +00:13
4. Matteo Sobrero (Astana) +00:14
5. Joao Almeida (Deceuninck-Quick Step) +00:27

CLASSIFICATION STANDINGS

General Classification

1. Egan Bernal (INEOS Grenadiers) 86:17:28
2. Damiano Caruso (Bahrain Victorious) +01:29
3. Simon Yates (Team BikeExchange) +04:15

Points Classification

1. Peter Sagan (Bora-Hansgrohe) 136
2. Davide Cimolai (Israel Start-Up Nation) 118
3. Fernando Gaviria (UAE Emirates) 116

King of the Mountains

1. Geoffrey Bouchard (AG2R Citroen) 184
2. Egan Bernal (INEOS Grenadiers) 140
3. Damiano Caruso (Bahrain Victorious) 99

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    Simon Yates did not want to put "a downer" on his stage 14 victory at the Giro d'Italia but is far from satisfied with his overall race. 

    Yates was seen as one of the contenders for the maglia rosa heading into the first Grand Tour of 2022 but the Briton is way down in 17th place in the general classification standings, 18 minutes and 44 seconds off new race leader Richard Carapaz. 

    Team BikeExchange-Jayco rider Yates, who won the individual time trial in Budapest on stage two, finished 15 seconds ahead of second-placed Jai Hindley on a day that threw the race wide open. 

    Yates latched onto a chasing pack that caught up with INEOS Grenadiers rider and 2019 Giro winner Carapaz, who had made a break with 28 kilometres remaining in Saturday's 147km route from Santena to Turin – the first of four consecutive mountain stages. 

    Hindley and Vincenzo Nibali, who is racing in his final Giro, were the initial chasers, but Yates – whose GC hopes were all but ended when he dropped 11 minutes on the Blockhaus climb on stage nine – had the momentum to cruise to victory. 

    While Yates was delighted with a sixth Giro stage win of his career, he could not help but be frustrated by being so far off the pace overall. 

    "I mean, not to put a downer on the day, but I came here to win the race," the 29-year-old said. "For me, it's another stage. I have five already and it's number six. 

    "I hope the legs stay as good as today. Today was a really big effort, not just for me but for everybody. The gaps are enormous, so if this heat sticks around it's going to be a very hard final week." 

    A bad day for Lopez

    Juan Pedro Lopez wore pink for 10 straight days but Saturday's stage was always likely to prove crucial and he went from holding a 12-second lead to ninth place, four minutes and four seconds behind Carapraz. 

    The experienced Ecuadorian attacked at just the right time for the GC standings, even if he was unable to hold on for the stage win.  

    STAGE RESULT

    1. Simon Yates (Team BikeExchange-Jayco) 3:43:44 
    2. Jai Hindley (BORA-hansgrohe) +0:15 
    3. Richard Carapaz (INEOS Grenadiers) +0:15 
    4. Vincenzo Nibali (Astana Qazaqstan Team) +0:15 
    5. Domenico Pozzovivo (Intermarche-Wanty-Gobert) +0:28 

    CLASSIFICATION STANDINGS   

    General Classification  

    1. Richard Carapaz (INEOS Grenadiers) 58:21:28 
    2. Jai Hindley (BORA-hansgrohe) +0:07 
    3. Joao Almeida (UAE Team Emirates) +0:30 

    Points Classification

    1. Arnaud Demare (Groupama-FDJ) 238 
    2. Mark Cavendish (Quick-Step Alpha Vinyl) 121 
    3. Fernando Gaviria (UAE Team Emirates) 117 

    King of the Mountains  

    1. Diego Rosa (Eolo-Kometa) 92 
    2. Koen Bouwman (Jumbo-Visma) 69 
    3. Jai Hindley (BORA-hansgrohe) 62 

  • Giro d'Italia: Demare clinches sprint victory to complete hat-trick of stage wins Giro d'Italia: Demare clinches sprint victory to complete hat-trick of stage wins

    Arnaud Demare won a third stage at the 2022 Giro d'Italia after he held off Phil Bauhaus and Mark Cavendish in a thrilling sprint finish.

    Demare won stages five and six and made it a hat-trick as he powered across the line first in Cuneo following a 150km route from Sanremo on Friday.

    That keeps Demare top of the points standings and comfortably in possession of the maglia ciclamino, which he won in 2020 and looks all set to regain this time around, with Cavendish some 117 points behind.

    The Frenchman was part of the chasing pack that caught a four-rider breakaway in the final section of stage 13, and it was he who launched the final sprint.

    Demare had just enough power to edge across the line ahead of Bauhaus to his right and Cavendish to his left.

    "It was an incredible day. They really resisted at the front. We had all the elements ready and everybody worked," said Demare.

    "We were really riding hard. The guys did a great job. It was a monstrous lead-out. With 1.5km to go we had to go up that climb hard. I did as strong a sprint as I could."

    Juan Pedro Lopez remains wearing pink for another day, as he maintained his 12-second lead over Richard Carapaz and Joao Almeida.

    Bardet bows out

    It was a bad day for Romain Bardet, who was only 14 seconds shy of Lopez in the general classification standings when he fell ill during stage 12 on Thursday.

    Unfortunately for Bardet and Team DSM, the Frenchman's condition worsened overnight and he has had to abandon the race.

    Team-mate Romain Combaud said: "There was only one week left. It's horrible for us. He is a great champion.

    "My role today was to stay with him. We said we would have an easy day, and he would get better tonight. But with the heat it was just too much for him."

    STAGE RESULT

    1. Arnaud Demare (Groupama-FDJ) 3:18:16
    2. Phil Bauhaus (Bahrain-Victorious) same time
    3. Mark Cavendish (Quick-Step Alpha Viny) same time
    4. Fernando Gaviria (UAE Team Emirates) same time
    5. Alberto Dainese (Team DSM) same time

    CLASSIFICATION STANDINGS   

    General Classification  

    1. Juan Pedro Lopez (Trek-Segafredo) 54:37:23
    2. Richard Carapaz (INEOS Grenadiers) +0:12
    3. Joao Almeida (UAE Team Emirates) +0:12

    Points Classification

    1. Arnaud Demare (Groupama-FDJ) 238
    2. Mark Cavendish (Quick-Step Alpha Viny) 121
    3. Fernando Gaviria (UAE Team Emirates) 117

    King of the Mountains  

    1. Diego Rosa (Eolo-Kometa) 83
    2. Koen Bouwman (Jumbo-Visma) 69
    3. Lennard Kamna (Bora-Hansgrohe) 43

  • Giro d'Italia: Stefano Oldani lands first professional win, leads home Italian one-two Giro d'Italia: Stefano Oldani lands first professional win, leads home Italian one-two

    Stefano Oldani gave Italy its second winner in two days at the Giro d'Italia as the man from Milan grabbed stage 12 glory in Genova.

    The 24-year-old fended off compatriot Lorenzo Rota in a mad dash for the line after they and Dutch rider Gijs Leemreize staged a three-man breakaway, riding for over 50 kilometres as a trio before it became every man for himself at the finish.

    Oldani, of the Alpenin-Fenix team, followed Alberto Dainese in delivering a home victory after the Team DSM man won on Wednesday. Until that point, Italy had been waiting for its first stage winner of the 2022 race.

    Leemreize made the first dart for glory as the riders wound up for a big finish, but his legs soon went and it became a duel between the Italian duo, with Oldani earning his first Grand Tour victory, remarkably also a maiden professional race win of any kind.

    Oldani said of his win on Eurosport: "For sure it was not easy. I knew Rota, he is my friend, so I knew that he was also fast, so I had to watch out.

    "And for sure, the other guy, it was obvious that he wanted to try to anticipate, so it was not so easy to manage it, but in the end it looks like I did it."

    The stage from Parma, a 204-kilometre ride, stretched out when Leemreize, Oldani and Rota raced clear of a breakaway group with just over 50km remaining.

    Four riders continued to loosely track them but sat 44 seconds back with 20km remaining and never looked like fully closing the gap, finishing 57 seconds back. The peloton, meanwhile, was eight minutes down the road as long-time leader Juan Pedro Lopez retained the Maglia Rosa – the leader's pink jersey.

    Lopez said: "For sure when I arrived here my objective was to try to win some stage, but now I live one dream, nine days in Maglia Rosa, and it was amazing."

    STAGE RESULT

    1. Stefano Oldani (Alpecin-Fenix) 4:26:47
    2. Lorenzo Rota (Intermarche-Wanty-Gobert) same time
    3. Gijs Leemreize (Jumbo-Visma) +0:02 seconds
    4. Bauke Mollema (Tre-Segafredo) +0:57s
    5. Santiago Buitrago (Bahrain-Victorious) +0:57s

    CLASSIFICATION STANDINGS   

    General Classification  

    1. Juan Pedro Lopez (Trek-Segafredo) 51:19:07
    2. Richard Carapaz (INEOS Grenadiers) +0:12
    3. Joao Almeida (UAE Team Emirates) +0:12

    Points Classification

    1. Arnaud Demare (Groupama-FDJ) 185
    2. Fernando Gaviria (UAE Team Emirates) 99
    3. Mark Cavendish (Quick-Step Alpha Vinyl) 96

    King of the Mountains  

    1. Diego Rosa (Eolo-Kometa) 83
    2. Koen Bouwman (Jumbo-Visma) 69
    3. Lennard Kamna (Bora-Hansgrohe) 43

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