Giro d'Italia: Stage 2 finish line quotes

'I'd like to keep the pink jersey but 19 more stages is a long way to go' says Dennis

Elia Viviani (Quick-Step Floors) – stage 2 winner

It wasn't easy to win. I'm usually calm but it wasn't easy to do well after a good start to season but then a stop, then starting again. I felt the pressure that I was the rider to beat.

I'd missed the last editions of the Giro, and in the last one I was out of the time limit. I have an account open with the Giro but I'm back with a really strong team.

It was difficult to stay together in the finale, so I used the team to keep the speed high. Then I got on Bennett's wheel. The others hesitated but I knew somebody would do something and was ready. When Mareczko jumped I got on him and then did my sprint. It was important to read it right. (Eurosport)

Rohan Dennis (BMC Racing) – new race leader

I have to thank the team. I didn't want to sprint today to be honest. I didn't want to because the guys would then have to ride. I wanted to leave the pressure on Sunweb but they said: 'No we back you,' so I have thank them.

The team rode for me for the 30km to that intermediate sprint. Before they made sure that Campenaerts didn't get up the road. They delivered me perfectly for the sprint and then it was about making sure I didn't lose time in the finale. It was massive team work.

I think Viviani sprinted but he didn't go full. It as good to see him get the stage win after, not gifting it to me, but he was kind, let's be honest.

Of course now I'd like to keep the pink jersey but 19 more stages is a long way to go. I've got a lot of things to learn before I start thinking of pink jerseys and Rome. That's a dream. I've got to be realistic and try to learn from guys like Dumoulin. But I'm going to enjoy this pink jersey, it's an honour. (RAI television)

Tom Dumoulin (Team Sunweb) – now second overall behind Rohan Dennis

It would have been nice to keep the pink jersey but it would have cost a lot of energy. BMC played it smart.

What do I expect of the next few stages? Stress. Like today. It was quite a stressful day but all in all, it was a quote okay day. Sicily is going to be much different with a lot of climbing.

It'll definitely be tough (tomorrow). I don't know how the wind will be but it's going to be a hard, long, hot stage. (Eurosport)

Jakub Mareczko (Wilier Triestina) – second on stage 2

Viviani did a great sprint and beat me pretty well. He's the strongest at the moment, there's no doubt about that.

My legs are good because despite everything, I was up front. We'll see how things go in the next few days and what I can do. (Spazio Ciclismo)

Enrico Barbin (Bardiani-CSF) – first leader of the king of the mountains competition

It wasn't planned, it came instinctively. The climb was short but tough. I was up front and so was well placed to try something.

You don't often get a chance to wear a jersey at the Giro d'Italia. I know everyone was cheering for Boivin because he was the local hero riding for the Israel Cycling Academy, but the Giro is really important for our team too. We've got to attack whenever we can to honour our place in the race.

I'm going to enjoy this jersey and see if I can keep it until we head to Italy. (Tuttobici)

Nicolas Portal - Team Sky directeur sportif

It was a pretty sketchy finish. The roads were quite wide but changing in width all the time. There were some drain covers on the road which you had to be careful of too.

It was a difficult run-in and it was hard to get everyone in a good position. The guys did a good job and for Froomey everything was fine.

It was just unlucky for Wout as he got a puncture with around six kilometres to go. He had to change the back wheel and he lost 40 seconds. Apart from that it was a good day and we are glad to get through it. (Team Sky)

 

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