Arnaud Démare (Groupama-FDJ) took his second Giro d'Italia win on Thursday's stage 6 in Matera, pushing across the line ahead of of Michael Matthews (Team Sunweb), with Fabio Felline (Astana) in third just behind.
Along with his 11th win of the 2020 season, Démare took the points jersey. Bora-Hansgrohe's Peter Sagan, wearer of the maglia ciclamino on the stage, ended in ninth place on stage 6. Démare stands in the clear lead of the points classification with 106 points, while Sagan trails in second place with 67, and Matthews lies third on 55 points.
Stage 6 of the Giro d'Italia took the peloton 188km from Castrovillari east across the 'instep' of Italy's boot to the ancient city of Matera in Basilicata. It was the first time since 2014 that the southern region hosted a stage finish, known for its stunning limestone dwellings that date back to the 10th century BC.
In the final kilometre Démare was not in the best position but jumped onto a move by Jakob Fuglsang (Astana) and Felline around the final two left-hand bends to surge ahead on the 2.6 per cent gradient to the line. Meanwhile, Sagan was stuck on the inside and and his sprint never got going.
João Almeida (Deceuninck-QuickStep) retained the race lead, 43 seconds ahead of Bahrain McLaren's Pello Bilbao. It was not free of trouble, as the 22-year-old Portuguese rider was hit by a UAE Team Emirates with 37km to go. Almeida had stopped to adjust his radio and was standing at the side of the road when McNulty and a teammate collided with the stationary Giro leader. All were able to regroup and continue, Almeida not losing any time.
Stage 7 will start in Matera for a flat, fast 143km to Brindisi. As the second-shortest road stage of the corsa rosa, it has "bunch sprint” written all over it. It has been almost 50 years since the Giro last paused in the Adriatic city of Brindisi. The final 1,200 metres run straight as an arrow to the line, so tune in for the excitement.
Watch the stage 6 highlights from the Giro d'Italia above.
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