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23 May 2018

Four... midable Viviani!

Elia Viviani (Quick-Step Floors) claimed another bunch sprint victory in difficult conditions at Iseo ahead of his arch-rival Sam Bennett (Bora – Hansgrohe) and Niccolo Bonifazio (Bahrain – Merida). The Franciacorta stage was shortened as the neutral zone was extended by 5.5 kilometres. The race was contested on lumpy terrain with numerous attacks and, come the end, in pouring rain. Simon Yates (Mitchelton – Scott) retained the Maglia Rosa for the 12th straight day ahead of three mountain stages.


  • Fourth stage win for Elia Viviani in this Giro, just as many as his team-mate Fernando Gaviria last year. The last Italian sprinter to win four stages in a single Giro was Alessandro Petacchi in 2005 (stage 9 to Ravenna, stage 12 to Rovereto, stage 15 to Lissone and stage 20 to Milan).
  • It’s the third time Niccolò Bonifazio has finished third in this year’s Giro. Bonifazio did the same in stage 7 to Praia a Mare and stage 12 to Imola.
  • This is the 12th Maglia Rosa for Simon Yates. Among the currently active riders, only Vincenzo Nibali (21) and Tom Dumoulin (17) have led the Giro d’Italia for more days. It’s the 18th Maglia Rosa for British riders – just as many as Irish riders – and they sit in 11th place in the countries’ tally.
  • If Simon Yates retains the Maglia Rosa till the end in Rome (16 days in the lead), it’ll be the longest reign since Tony Rominger, who led the Giro for 21 days (from stage 2 to 22 – there was only one rest day that year) in 1995. The year before, Evgeni Berzin took 19 consecutive Maglia Rosa. The record belongs to Eddy Merckx with 36 in a row from stage 7 in 1972 to the last one in 1973, the year he led from start to finish.

1 – Elia Viviani (Quick-Step Floors) – 149.5km in 3h19’57”, average speed 44.861km/h
2 – Sam Bennett (Bora – Hansgrohe) s.t.
3 – Niccolò Bonifazio (Bahrain – Merida) s.t.
4 – Danny Van Poppel (Team Lotto NL – Jumbo) s.t.
5 – Jens Debusschere (Lotto Soudal) s.t.

1 – Simon Yates (Mitchelton – Scott)
2 – Tom Dumoulin (Team Sunweb) at 56″
3 – Domenico Pozzovivo (Bahrain – Merida) at 3’11”
4 – Chris Froome (Team Sky) at 3’50”
5 – Thibaut Pinot (Groupama – FDJ) at 4’19”

All the rankings


  • Maglia Rosa (pink), general classification leader, sponsored by Enel – Simon Yates (Mitchelton – Scott)
  • Maglia Ciclamino (cyclamen), sprinter classification leader, sponsored by Segafredo – Elia Viviani (Quick-Step Floors)
  • Maglia Azzurra (blue), King of the Mountains classification leader, sponsored by Banca Mediolanum – Simon Yates (Mitchelton – Scott), jersey worn by Giulio Ciccone (Bardiani CSF)
  • Maglia Bianca (white), young rider general classification leader, sponsored by Eurospin – Miguel Angel Lopez (Astana Pro Team)

The stage winner, Elia Viviani, said: “My 10th win of the season and my fourth at the Giro d’Italia confirms the level I’ve reached since I joined Quick Step. I’ve only doubted myself at Imola where I had a bad day, but I came here with a very well-prepared team that was built to help me win stages. In addition to these victories, the Maglia Ciclamino was – and remains – my main goal of the season. I was pretty nervous this morning because I knew this was a unique occasion for Sam Bennett to take the jersey away from me. Therefore, we opted for a defensive tactic – firstly to make it back to the back after being dropped in a climb, secondly in the lead-up to the sprint. Eventually, my lead-out men could play their normal role, especially Fabio Sabatini who had a flat tyre before my second win in Eilat and a mechanical before my third win in Nervesa della Battaglia. He made the difference in the sprint today.”

The Maglia Rosa, Simon Yates, said: “I was expecting a much easier day today. It’s been a very fast stage. Everybody was looking for a breakaway. There were also candidates for a sprint finish. We didn’t make the race difficult but other teams did because they were never happy with the composition of the breakaways. We were happy for the breakaways to stay away but other teams were not, so it came down to a sprint. In the coming three days, I’ll watch Tom [Dumoulin] mostly and the other GC guys. I’m getting closer to the end. As the days tick down, I feel that I’m getting closer to the overall victory but I also feel that difficult days are coming so I’ll be careful. Tomorrow is the only day that I know the final climb but I expect a breakaway to finally succeed.”

Tomorrow’s Stage