Stickybottle

Yates wins but Dumoulin ominously looking stronger on Giro

Posted on: May 16th, 2018

Simon Yates wins Giro stage 10: The battle lines are drawn and two men look to be most up for the fight. Yates is leading but Tom Dumoulin seems to be getting better as the race goes on; perfect for the very challenging final week of Giro 2018.

 

Simon Yates has collected his second Giro stage win wearing the maglia rosa. However, defending champion Tom Dumoulin is now showing the kind of form that won him the race last year.

While other riders also remain in contention, they all ceded time on today’s stage 11. Fabio Aru and Chris Froome looked particularly poor.

There remain 10 stages on this race, including a TT and three summit finishes in a row after it.

Given all that can happen between now and Rome when the race concludes on Sunday week, it would be a brave man who would call the final outcome this far out.

But when the pressure ramped up on the final incline to the finish today, Yates (Mitchelton-Scott) simply powered away to victory.

And hunting him down the whole way to the line was Dumoulin; the Team Sunweb rider losing just two seconds.

Nicolas Roche (BMC Racing) was 125th today, some 9:10 off the pace. Ryan Mullen (Trek-Segafredo) and Sam Bennett (Bora-hansgrohe) were 140th and 144th; both in a group some 12:42 down.

At the end of the 156km stage from Assisi to Osimo, it was Tim Wellens (Lotto-Fix All)  and Zdenek Stybar (QuickStep) who tried to break clear.

They attacked with about 5km remaining. But when the road kicked up with just a couple of kilometres to go, they couldn’t keep it going.

And just as they were caught Yates sprang from the favourites bunch.

Clearly looking to take time on Dumoulin, he also knew Froome (Team Sky) and Aru (UAE Team Emirates) were labouring at the back of the group.

While Yates immediately opened a gap, Dumoulin saw him go and in an instant sprinted after him.

It took the Dutchman’s diesel engine a few seconds to get properly going, and in that time Yates had pulled out a decent gap.

But Dumoulin then pegged him back a little and that’s how it remained all the way to the line.

It was a fantastic battle; Yates going on the attack for the stage and because he knows he needs more time to win this race. And his challenger scrambling after him.

In the end Yates looked as strong as he has done from the day this race began and he scored a surprise 7th in the stage 1 TT.

But Dumoulin looked like a man whose climbing form is rising. And Yates admitted as much at the finish.

“I’d prefer to be getting more time on Tom,” he said. “He was really chasing me all the way to the finish there.

“He looks better than the other day on the steep finishes there. I think he’s getting better as the race goes on, and that’s not good news for me.”

But while Yates and Dumoulin were the strongest today and are first and second overall, there are of course other contenders.

Thibaut Pinot (Groupama-FDJ) was 7th today and lost only eight seconds.

Domenico Pozzovivo (Bahrain Merida) was 5th and was also eight seconds adrift of Simon Yates on the line.

Richard Carapaz (Movistar) is 5th overall and lost 23 seconds today; finishing 11th on the stage.

Rounding out the top six on general classification at present, George Bennett (LottoNL-Jumbo) is at 2:09. And 7th overall is Rohan Dennis of BMC, at 2:36.

Bennett was 12th today at 23 seconds. And Dennis was 9th at 18 seconds.

Outside the top six overall, the other big name general classification men are Aru (10th overall at 3:10), Miguel Angel Lopez of Astana (11th overall at 3:17) and Froome (12th overall at 3:20).

 

 

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