Giro d'Italia: Stage 12 finish line quotes

Bennett catches them by surprise in Imola

Sam Bennett (Bora-Hansgrohe) - stage winner

"I think it was a bunch sprint but it was a tough final. We still had two guys in front - I didn't know how much energy they had left but I didn't want another stage getting away from me. So I decided to go early – I didn't know if I could hold it or not. I think I caught some guys by surprise, so it worked to my advantage.

"I think the way it happened, that I had to go so early and I pulled it off - it's a nice way to win. It gives me confidence.

[Did you know Viviani was dropped?] "We knew in the crosswinds but then we heard he was back. Then when it was lined out we heard he was gone again, so then it didn't really matter if he was there or not. We wanted to do the race to win. We were just trying to keep good position and race tactically well."

Richard Carapaz (Movistar Team) - best young rider

[On his scare getting split off with 25km to go] "It was a bit of a scare because the bunch was split with 25km to go, but with the help of the team I managed to get back on. It was no problem in the end.

[On Betancur's attack] "We thought Betancur could win the stage - he was feeling that he had very good legs, so he attacked. He was very close to winning. Our team is going very well these days, so we are very happy."

Simon Yates (Mitchelton-Scott) - race leader

"It was good conditions for an Irishman [Bennett]! It was a very difficult final. I think a few guys underestimated that, me included. I think we've come through without any time loss, so it's OK.

"I saw a few guys going, but in those conditions, it's really hard to see who's going, which is why I reacted, actually. I wasn't sure who was there. Better to close it than to be behind."

Diego Ulissi (UAE Team Emirates) - late attacker

"I was in a good position approaching the climb of Tre Monti and I had good legs, so I tried an attack. After having reached the summit I tried to continue, but the advantage was just too small to reach the finish."

Chad Haga (Team Sunweb) - teammate of Tom Dumoulin

"When the rain starts falling, the field becomes much more nervous and the pace goes up, and the race totally changes. There were some crosswinds, nothing too strong, but once it started raining, the crosswinds have more of an effect. The wind picked up a little but because when a storm comes in like this, things can change quickly.

"We were focused on finding each other, knowing that every time you come out of one of those little villages, it's going to stretch out. It did split for a bit. We look for each other, know where Tom [Dumoulin] is at all times, and staying with him. Our director in the car is telling us when we really have to make the effort. 

"The GC favourites have such a wide range of levels right now, it seems, so tactically, they might try something to make up for it. You never know what is happening in the other competitions, for example KOMs or sprint jersey, all those factor in, and you get wild tactics.

[On Tom Dumoulin] "Tom's in a great mood, very relaxed and feeling good ahead of the hardest stages that are still to come. When Tom is relaxed, we [the team] are also relaxed, happy and enjoying ourselves. We are ready for the days to come." (To Eurosport)

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