Merlier loses Giro d'Italia points jersey after chain problem in stage 5 sprint

Tim Merlier (Alpecin-Fenix) on stage 3 of the Giro d'Italia
Tim Merlier (Alpecin-Fenix) on stage 3 of the Giro d'Italia (Image credit: Getty Images)

Tim Merlier (Alpecin-Fenix) said after his Giro d'Italia stage victory in Novara on Sunday that everything coming later was a bonus, but after three days in the lead of the points classification, he lost the ciclamino jersey when his chain dropped during the sprint on stage 5 in Cattolica. Giacomo Nizzolo (Qhubeka Assos) took the jersey with second place on the stage.

Merlier had jumped on the wheel of eventual stage winner Caleb Ewan (Lotto Soudal) but got squeezed between the Australian and Bora-Hansgrohe's Peter Sagan, and a brief back-pedal was enough to dislodge his chain and end his time in the jersey. After leading by 12 points over Elia Viviani (Cofidis), Merlier is now third behind the two Italians.

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