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Giro d'Italia giants clash on Blockhaus - Video

Stage 9 of the Giro d'Italia to Blockhaus gave the overall contenders their first true glimpse into Magic 8 Ball of form, with 31.6 kilometres to grind up this monster of a mountain from Roccamorice.

As the climb commenced, the message came up 'outlook not so good' for the day's breakaway, with Diego Rosa (Eolo-Kometa) the last rider caught by a peloton led by Ineos Grenadiers.

On the most punishing of the gradients on Blockhaus, the ball said 'my reply is no' to Simon Yates (BikeExchange-Jayco) who was dropped and left behind by 11 minutes at the end.

For race leader Juan Pedro López (Trek-Segafredo), it came up 'concentrate and ask again' as he fought to hold onto the maglia rosa.

At the finish, it was Jai Hindley (Bora-Hansgrohe) 'without a doubt' winning the stage with a perfectly timed surge. Signs pointed to 'yes' for contenders Richard Carapaz (Ineos), Mikel Landa (Bahrain Victorious) and João Almeida (UAE) who finished in the same group.

However, the message was 'don't count on it' for Romain Bardet (Team DSM), who came a bitterly close second to Hindley. 

López, fighting to the finish, was stunned to find that he'd held onto the maglia rosa by a slim 12 seconds. 'Outlook is good' that he will spend at least one more day in the pink jersey and could well hold on through to the next summit finish at Cogne on stage 15.

See the video highlights above.

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Laura Weislo has been with Cyclingnews since 2006 after making a switch from a career in science. As Deputy Editor, she coordinates coverage for North American events and global news. A former elite-level road racer who dabbled in cyclo-cross and track, Laura has a passion for all three disciplines. When not working she likes to go camping and explore lesser traveled roads, paths and gravel tracks.