Simon Yates: I didn’t even realise Egan Bernal was dropped

Simon Yates (BikeExchange) during stage 17
Simon Yates (BikeExchange) during stage 17 (Image credit: Getty Images Sport)

Simon Yates (Team BikeExchange) paused a beat before answering. The opening gambit from the television reporter had been enthusiastic – “Simon, now you can win the Giro.” – but Yates’ response was, typically, rather more restrained. “No, I don’t think that’s a correct statement,” he said softly.

Yet the statement was hardly outlandish either, given the timbre of Yates’ performance on the summit finish at Sega di Ala. He began stage 17 of the Giro d’Italia fifth overall, some 4:20 off Egan Bernal’s (Ineos Grenadiers) lead. He ended it third at 3:23 after dropping the maglia rosa on the steepest section of, arguably, the race’s toughest climb. 

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Barry Ryan
Head of Features

Barry Ryan is Head of Features at Cyclingnews. He has covered professional cycling since 2010, reporting from the Tour de France, Giro d’Italia and events from Argentina to Japan. His writing has appeared in The Independent, Procycling and Cycling Plus. He is the author of The Ascent: Sean Kelly, Stephen Roche and the Rise of Irish Cycling’s Golden Generation, published by Gill Books.