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Jai Hindley's Giro d'Italia suffers another blow after stage 8 crash hold-up

Giro d'Italia 2021 - 104th Edition - 5th stage Modena - Cattolica 177 km - 12/05/2021 - Romain Bardet (FRA - Team DSM) - Jai Hindley (AUS - Team DSM) - photo Luca Bettini/BettiniPhoto©2021
Jai Hindley of Team DSM (Image credit: Bettini Photo)

Jai Hindley's Giro d'Italia challenge suffered another minor setback on stage 8 when last year's runner-up was caught behind a late crash. 

The Team DSM rider lost 11 seconds on almost all of his main rivals for the maglia rosa and dropped to 23rd overall, 3:40 down overall leader Attila Valter (Groupama-FDJ).

The incident occurred on the final 3km climb, when Matteo Fabbro (Bora-Hansgrohe) hit the deck. The fall held up a number of riders, including Hindley, who was forced to chase as Ineos Grenadiers controlled the pace of the GC group on behalf of Egan Bernal. 

Hindley was paced to the finish line in Guardia Sanframondi by teammate Michael Storer but finished 4:59 down on surprise breakaway winner Victor Lafay (Cofidis).

João Almeida (Deceuninck-QuickStep) led the bulk of the GC contenders home at 4:48 after a group of nine riders contented the stage win, but Hindley's losses leave him further off the pace ahead of Sunday's mountain stage, which features a gravel finale. 

The 25-year-old lost time on the first summit finish to Sestola on stage 4 and lost further time on stage 6 to Ascoli Piceno. 

The Australian's teammate Romain Bardet managed to come through stage 8 unscathed and finished alongside Bernal and Remco Evenepoel (Deceuninck-QuickStep). Bardet, who is making his debut in the Giro d'Italia, sits 1:14 off Valter's pink jersey and in 14th place overall.

Hindley wasn't the only GC contender who saw his already-slim hopes take a dent, with Pello Bilbao losing 30 seconds due to the same fall. The Bahrain Victorious rider - who finished fifth in the Giro d'Italia last year - was hoping to step up after team leader Mikel Landa crashed out of the race on stage 5, although they still have Damiano Caruso sixth overall.

More to come...

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