Giro d'Italia: Quotes from the finish line of stage 11

Ilnur Zakarin (Katusha) made it another successful day for the breakaway, with victory in Imola on stage 11 of the Giro d'Italia. Zakarin left his escape companion in his wake with an attack on the penultimate climb of the day and led them over the line by almost a minute.

Zakarin's win wasn't the only surprise of the day as Alberto Contador (Tinkoff-Saxo) decided to have a dig off the front at the top of the final climb. Content that he'd tested his rivals enough, the race leader settled back into the peloton and there was no change at the top of the overall classification.

Here is a selection of reactions from stage 11 of the Giro d'Italia.

Alberto Contador (Tinkoff-Saxo)

"There wasn't much terrain to have a go today but I knew that there were a few riders that weren't enjoying themselves, who weren't feeling good. We didn't see too much but I could tell that there were a few riders who weren't feeling so great so I decided to have a go.

"I think every day is important in the Giro. You have to try and get over the bad days and that's what I tried to do. Today there wasn't the terrain but there were some interesting little things to see."

Ilnur Zakarin (Katusha)

"I started the stage in good heart, and the breakaway riders worked well together. I made one attempt to get away, and at the second try, I made it. I learned a lesson in the stage that Intxausti won because that day I made the mistake of attacking too early. This time, I waited until the last moment. I still can't believe that I won the Tour de Romandie, and now I've won a stage of the Giro. I have many emotions, and I'm very happy."

Beñat Intxausti (Movistar)

"When I saw the profile today I wanted to have a go. I think it's important to get points bit by bit for the blue jersey. It was a bit more complicated today to get the win and after Ilnur Zakarin went out it was hard to catch him.

"I knew that I had that advantage (of a stage victory) in the breakaway. Zakarin was there and I knew that it would be a very difficult day because he's so strong. It's a shame we didn't try to break him down and get to him, but he did it and well done to him."

Michael Rogers (Tinkoff-Saxo)

"It was a very tough stage, very fast from the start with a lot of climbs. The team was very strong today and able to control it. It was in our interest to let the breakaway go a bit and then obviously BMC, with Philippe Gilbert, came to close the gap and GreenEdge tried to help but they were a strong group out there. For us it was an ideal situation and we were quite happy for them to ride at the finish."

On Contador's attack: "I don't know what that was about but you know Alberto, when he feels good he attacks. That's why he's so great to ride for. We're happy to keep the jersey, it was a tougher day than I expected and the weather made it a little bit harder but once again we were able to keep it."

Thank you for reading 5 articles in the past 30 days*

Join now for unlimited access

Enjoy your first month for just £1 / $1 / €1

*Read any 5 articles for free in each 30-day period, this automatically resets

After your trial you will be billed £4.99 $7.99 €5.99 per month, cancel anytime. Or sign up for one year for just £49 $79 €59

Join now for unlimited access

Try your first month for just £1 / $1 / €1