Giro d'Italia: Caicedo wins on Mount Etna as Thomas, Yates lose ground

Jonathan Caicedo (EF Pro Cycling) claimed a memorable stage 3 at the Giro d’Italia, winning alone atop Mount Etna after surviving from the day’s break to take the biggest win of his career. 

The rider from Ecuador won alone ahead of Giovanni Visconti (Vini Zabu-KTM) but the battle for the stage win only told one side of the day’s action with the race for the maglia rosa seeing Geraint Thomas (Ineos Grenadiers) and Simon Yates (Mitchelton-Scott) fade out of contention. Thomas crashed in the neutralized zone and was dropped even before the final climb started, while Yates slipped back on the lower slopes of Mount Etna.

The GC contenders attacked each other repeatedly on the final climb with Wilco Kelderman (Team Sunweb) putting in a huge dig with 3.5km to go. Vincenzo Nibali (Trek-Segafredo), Rafal Majka (Bora-hansgrohe), Domenico Pozzovivo (NTT Pro Cycling) and Jakob Fuglsang (Astana) formed a chase group behind the Dutchman but they too would concede time – albeit a fraction of the time lost by Yates and Thomas – with Kelderman putting 12 seconds into Nibali’s group.

The Sunweb rider crossed the line in fourth place, just a few seconds after Harm Vanhouke (Lotto Soudal), however Joao Almeida’s 11th place on the stage was enough to give the QuickStep rider the maglia rosa after the overnight leader Filippo Ganna (Ineos Grendiers) dropped back to assist Thomas.

After three stages of this year’s Giro d’Italia, it’s Almeida who leads by less than a second over Caicedo, with Pello Bilbao (Bahrain McLaren) in third at 37 seconds. Kelderman leads the rest of the GC riders in fourth with Yates now at 3:46 and his Giro d’Italia hopes hanging by a thread.

For Almeida, the result was a huge moment in his young career.

“Today was just trying to hold as much as I could. I knew I had good legs since the beginning - I was feeling good. In the end it was just a sufferfest until the finish. I knew (I could take the maglia rosa) in the final 3km I was feeling good, I would never expect to be in this position and I'm really happy with this. I hope tomorrow morning I will feel this. It will be a really hard task, of course we will do everything we can. We also have strong teammates so I think we can make a good Giro.”

As for Thomas, after losing over ten minutes, his GC bid is over. The 2018 Tour de France winner came into the race as one of the favourites and he could leave after stage 3 once medical checks are completed. The loss of the Welshman – even as a GC rider - will have a huge effect on how the race plays over the next few weeks. Climbers will no longer have to be as aggressive in order to distance the time trial specialist and Ineos Grenadiers will no longer be required to work on the front. The race has effectively been blown wide open.

How it unfolded

The most significant action in the early hours of the race was Thomas’ fall. He came down in the neutralized zone with his team informing Cyclingnews at the time that the crash could have been caused by a dropped bidon but the Welshman was quickly back on his bike and racing in the early stages of the race.

Josip Rumac (Androni Giocattoli-Sidermec), Francesco Romano (Bardiani-CSF), Matt Holmes (Lotto Soudal), Giovanni Visconti (Vini Zabu-KTM), Victor Campenaerts (NTT Pro Cycling), Mikkel Bjerg (UAE Team Emirates), Lawson Craddock, and Jonathan Caicedo (EF Pro Cycling) formed the early break and with Etna in the distance the focal point of the stage would always be the deciding factor.

It was Mitchelton-Scott who set the early tempo in the stage, themselves the memorable 1-2 winners the last time the Giro raced up the volcano in 2018 and with 50km to go the leaders had 5:10 over the peloton. Roughly 15km later a stray dog decided that the race needed some excitement and meandered into the front of the bunch. Luckily there were no fallers and the cavalier canine came through unscathed but a few kilometres later Nibali sent his men to the front and the race began in earnest.

Almost immediately, Thomas, his left side cut to shreds from the earlier fall, began to slip back. Ganna and Rohan Dennis attempted to nurse him back to the peloton but it was quickly apparent that the former Tour winner couldn’t pedal at full force.

With 16km to go, and on the lower slopes of the climb the leaders had 2:30 over the peloton but Caicedo and Visconti – who were briefly joined by Bjerg – were a cut above the rest and with 14km to go they stretched clear of the remnants of the break.

Bora-hansgrohe took over from Trek-Segafredo at the front of the reduced bunch and it was the German team’s effort that wrecked Yates’ chance. He was already towards the back of the peloton with 10km to go and the 28-year-old was forced to sit up and ride at his own pace as riders quickly began to attack from the main field. One-by-one and the riders from the early break were caught before only Visconti and Caicedo remained out front and as the rain began to fall it looked as though the pair would decide the day’s honours.

Back in the main field, Fuglsang attacked with 5km remaining, just as up front Caicedo distanced Visconti. The Dane was quickly caught before Kelderman threw in an equally powerful attack 1,500m later. This move stuck and even though Trek-Segafredo, and then Nibali himself, mounted a chase the Sunweb rider remained clear.

Steven Kruijswijk was dropped twice before the finish but managed to limit his loses with the entire race turned on its head in the space of just one climb.

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Full Results
Pos.Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Jonathan Caicedo (Ecu) EF Pro Cycling 4:02:33
2Giovanni Visconti (Ita) Vini Zabu' KTM 0:00:21
3Harm Vanhoucke (Bel) Lotto Soudal 0:00:30
4Wilco Kelderman (Ned) Team Sunweb 0:00:39
5Jakob Fuglsang (Den) Astana Pro Team 0:00:51
6Rafal Majka (Pol) Bora-Hansgrohe
7Vincenzo Nibali (Ita) Trek-Segafredo
8Jonathan Castroviejo Nicolas (Spa) Ineos Grenadiers
9Domenico Pozzovivo (Ita) NTT Pro Cycling
10Steven Kruijswijk (Ned) Team Jumbo-Visma 0:00:56
11Joao Almeida (Por) Deceuninck-Quickstep 0:01:03
12Pello Bilbao (Spa) Bahrain McLaren
13Antonio Pedrero (Spa) Movistar Team 0:01:23
14Patrick Konrad (Aut) Bora-Hansgrohe 0:01:29
15Hermann Pernsteiner (Aut) Bahrain McLaren
16Fausto Masnada (Ita) Deceuninck-Quickstep 0:01:31
17Sergio Samitier Samitier (Spa) Movistar Team 0:01:37
18Louis Meintjes (RSA) NTT Pro Cycling
19Jai Hindley (Aus) Team Sunweb
20Brandon McNulty (USA) UAE Team Emirates
21Ilnur Zakarin (Rus) CCC Team
22James Knox (GBr) Deceuninck-Quickstep 0:01:52
23Gianluca Brambilla (Ita) Trek-Segafredo 0:02:11
24Tao Geoghegan Hart (GBr) Ineos Grenadiers 0:02:33
25Lucas Hamilton (Aus) Mitchelton-Scott 0:02:48
26Giovanni Carboni (Ita) Bardiani CSF Faizane' 0:03:18
27Stéphane Rossetto (Fra) Cofidis 0:03:23
28Aurélien Paret Peintre (Fra) AG2R la Mondiale 0:03:42
29Koen Bouwman (Ned) Team Jumbo-Visma 0:04:17
30Jack Haig (Aus) Mitchelton-Scott 0:04:22
31Simon Yates (GBr) Mitchelton-Scott
32Tony Gallopin (Fra) AG2R la Mondiale
33Jaakko Hanninen (Fin) AG2R la Mondiale
34Geoffrey Bouchard (Fra) AG2R la Mondiale
35Antonio Nibali (Ita) Trek-Segafredo
36Martijn Tusveld (Ned) Team Sunweb 0:04:59
37Chris Harper (Aus) Team Jumbo-Visma
38Daniel Navarro Garcia (Spa) Israel Start-Up Nation 0:05:32
39Oscar Rodriguez Garaicoechea (Spa) Astana Pro Team 0:05:48
40Tanel Kangert (Est) EF Pro Cycling 0:05:55
41Joe Dombrowski (USA) UAE Team Emirates 0:06:30
42Sander Armee (Bel) Lotto Soudal 0:07:39
43Carl Fredrik Hagen (Nor) Lotto Soudal
44Kilian Frankiny (Swi) Groupama-FDJ
45Ruben Guerreiro (Por) EF Pro Cycling
46Ben Swift (GBr) Ineos Grenadiers
47Nicola Conci (Ita) Trek-Segafredo
48Lawrence Warbasse (USA) AG2R la Mondiale
49Attila Valter (Hun) CCC Team 0:07:43
50Sam Oomen (Ned) Team Sunweb 0:08:20
51Ben O'Connor (Aus) NTT Pro Cycling 0:08:30
52Matteo Fabbro (Ita) Bora-Hansgrohe 0:09:55
53Mikkel Bjerg (Den) UAE Team Emirates
54Joseph Rosskopf (USA) CCC Team 0:10:01
55Amanuel Gebreigzabhier (Eri) NTT Pro Cycling 0:10:15
56Matthew Holmes (GBr) Lotto Soudal 0:10:54
57Julien Bernard (Fra) Trek-Segafredo 0:11:34
58Giulio Ciccone (Ita) Trek-Segafredo
59Jesper Hansen (Den) Cofidis
60Jonas Gregaard Wilsly (Den) Astana Pro Team
61Davide Villella (Ita) Movistar Team
62Victor De la Parte (Spa) CCC Team
63Pavel Kochetkov (Rus) CCC Team
64Simone Ravanelli (Ita) Androni Giocattoli-Sidermec
65Pieter Serry (Bel) Deceuninck-Quickstep
66Pawel Poljanski (Pol) Bora-Hansgrohe
67Fabio Felline (Ita) Astana Pro Team
68Salvatore Puccio (Ita) Ineos Grenadiers 0:12:19
69Geraint Thomas (GBr) Ineos Grenadiers
70Mikkel Frølich Honoré (Den) Deceuninck-Quickstep
71Jacopo Mosca (Ita) Trek-Segafredo
72Jefferson Alexander Cepeda (Ecu) Androni Giocattoli-Sidermec
73Enrico Battaglin (Ita) Bahrain McLaren
74Mark Padun (Ukr) Bahrain McLaren
75Ben Gastauer (Lux) AG2R la Mondiale
76Christoph Pfingsten (Ger) Team Jumbo-Visma
77Luca Wackermann (Ita) Vini Zabu' KTM
78François Bidard (Fra) AG2R la Mondiale
79Einer Augusto Rubio Reyes (Col) Movistar Team 0:14:09
80Damien Howson (Aus) Mitchelton-Scott
81Pieter Weening (Ned) Trek-Segafredo
82Dario Cataldo (Ita) Movistar Team 0:15:26
83Valerio Conti (Ita) UAE Team Emirates
84Chad Haga (USA) Team Sunweb 0:16:08
85Tobias Foss (Nor) Team Jumbo-Visma
86Thomas De Gendt (Bel) Lotto Soudal
87Antwan Tolhoek (Ned) Team Jumbo-Visma 0:16:19
88Diego Ulissi (Ita) UAE Team Emirates 0:16:27
89Eduardo Sepulveda (Arg) Movistar Team 0:17:32
90Manuele Boaro (Ita) Astana Pro Team 0:18:07
91Filippo Zana (Ita) Bardiani CSF Faizane' 0:18:09
92Josip Rumac (Cro) Androni Giocattoli-Sidermec
93Jan Tratnik (Slo) Bahrain McLaren
94Lorenzo Rota (Ita) Vini Zabu' KTM
95Edoardo Zardini (Ita) Vini Zabu' KTM 0:18:49
96Rohan Dennis (Aus) Ineos Grenadiers 0:19:07
97Filippo Ganna (Ita) Ineos Grenadiers 0:19:47
98Matteo Sobrero (Ita) NTT Pro Cycling
99Andrea Vendrame (Ita) AG2R la Mondiale
100Alessandro Tonelli (Ita) Bardiani CSF Faizane'
101Luca Chirico (Ita) Androni Giocattoli-Sidermec
102Hector Carretero (Spa) Movistar Team
103Alexander Cataford (Can) Israel Start-Up Nation
104Francesco Romano (Ita) Bardiani CSF Faizane'
105Lawson Craddock (USA) EF Pro Cycling
106Simon Clarke (Aus) EF Pro Cycling
107Christopher Hamilton (Aus) Team Sunweb 0:20:23
108Simon Pellaud (Swi) Androni Giocattoli-Sidermec 0:21:29
109Danilo Wyss (Swi) NTT Pro Cycling
110Rodrigo Contreras Pinzon (Col) Astana Pro Team
111Mathias Le Turnier (Fra) Cofidis
112Mattia Bais (Ita) Androni Giocattoli-Sidermec
113Lachlan Morton (Aus) EF Pro Cycling
114Yukiya Arashiro (Jpn) Bahrain McLaren
115Victor Campenaerts (Bel) NTT Pro Cycling 0:23:38
116James Whelan (Aus) EF Pro Cycling 0:24:48
117Tony Martin (Ger) Team Jumbo-Visma
118Matteo Spreafico (Ita) Androni Giocattoli-Sidermec
119Eros Capecchi (Ita) Bahrain McLaren
120Kamil Malecki (Pol) CCC Team
121Nicolas Edet (Fra) Cofidis
122Domen Novak (Slo) Bahrain McLaren
123Marco Frapporti (Ita) Vini Zabu' KTM
124Simone Bevilacqua (Ita) Vini Zabu' KTM
125Jhonatan Manuel Narvaez Prado (Ecu) Ineos Grenadiers
126Dylan Sunderland (Aus) NTT Pro Cycling
127Alessandro Bisolti (Ita) Androni Giocattoli-Sidermec
128Miles Scotson (Aus) Groupama-FDJ
129Jhonatan Restrepo Valencia (Col) Androni Giocattoli-Sidermec
130Cameron Meyer (Aus) Mitchelton-Scott
131Sean Bennett (USA) EF Pro Cycling
132Adam Hansen (Aus) Lotto Soudal
133Josef Cerny (Cze) CCC Team
134Cesare Benedetti (Ita) Bora-Hansgrohe
135Etienne Van Empel (Ned) Vini Zabu' KTM
136Stefano Oldani (Ita) Lotto Soudal 0:25:12
137Davide Ballerini (Ita) Deceuninck-Quickstep
138Fabio Mazzucco (Ita) Bardiani CSF Faizane'
139Michael Matthews (Aus) Team Sunweb
140Peter Sagan (Svk) Bora-Hansgrohe
141Maciej Bodnar (Pol) Bora-Hansgrohe
142Kamil Gradek (Pol) CCC Team
143Filippo Fiorelli (Ita) Bardiani CSF Faizane' 0:30:23
144Marco Mathis (Ger) Cofidis
145Nathan Haas (Aus) Cofidis
146Alex Dowsett (GBr) Israel Start-Up Nation
147Elia Viviani (Ita) Cofidis
148Fernando Gaviria Rendon (Col) UAE Team Emirates
149Jonathan Dibben (GBr) Lotto Soudal
150Jos Van Emden (Ned) Team Jumbo-Visma
151Ramon Sinkeldam (Ned) Groupama-FDJ
152Guy Sagiv (Isr) Israel Start-Up Nation
153Giovanni Lonardi (Ita) Bardiani CSF Faizane'
154Patrick Gamper (Aut) Bora-Hansgrohe
155Matthias Brändle (Aut) Israel Start-Up Nation
156Juan Sebastian Molano Benavides (Col) UAE Team Emirates
157Maximiliano Ariel Richeze (Arg) UAE Team Emirates
158Rick Zabel (Ger) Israel Start-Up Nation
159Nico Denz (Ger) Team Sunweb
160Iljo Keisse (Bel) Deceuninck-Quickstep
161Alvaro Jose Hodeg Chagui (Col) Deceuninck-Quickstep
162Davide Cimolai (Ita) Israel Start-Up Nation
163Brent Bookwalter (USA) Mitchelton-Scott
164Simone Consonni (Ita) Cofidis
165Jacopo Guarnieri (Ita) Groupama-FDJ
166Simon Guglielmi (Fra) Groupama-FDJ
167Arnaud Demare (Fra) Groupama-FDJ
168Albert Torres Barcelo (Spa) Movistar Team
169Ignatas Konovalovas (Ltu) Groupama-FDJ
170Edoardo Affini (Ita) Mitchelton-Scott
171Benjamin Thomas (Fra) Groupama-FDJ 0:31:24
172Rudy Barbier (Fra) Israel Start-Up Nation 0:31:46
173Michael Hepburn (Aus) Mitchelton-Scott 0:32:17
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Intermediate sprint, Zafferana Etnea - km 107.4
Pos.Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Josip Rumac (Cro) Androni Giocattoli-Sidermec 12
2Jonathan Caicedo (Ecu) EF Pro Cycling 8
3Lawson Craddock (USA) EF Pro Cycling 6
4Victor Campenaerts (Bel) NTT Pro Cycling 5
5Giovanni Visconti (Ita) Vini Zabu' KTM 4
6Matthew Holmes (GBr) Lotto Soudal 3
7Francesco Romano (Ita) Bardiani CSF Faizane' 2
8Mikkel Bjerg (Den) UAE Team Emirates 1
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Points
Pos.Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Jonathan Caicedo (Ecu) EF Pro Cycling 15
2Giovanni Visconti (Ita) Vini Zabu' KTM 12
3Harm Vanhoucke (Bel) Lotto Soudal 9
4Wilco Kelderman (Ned) Team Sunweb 7
5Jakob Fuglsang (Den) Astana Pro Team 6
6Rafal Majka (Pol) Bora-Hansgrohe 5
7Vincenzo Nibali (Ita) Trek-Segafredo 4
8Jonathan Castroviejo Nicolas (Spa) Ineos Grenadiers 3
9Domenico Pozzovivo (Ita) NTT Pro Cycling 2
10Steven Kruijswijk (Ned) Team Jumbo-Visma 1
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Bonus sprint, Linguaglossa - km 130.9
Pos.Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Lawson Craddock (USA) EF Pro Cycling 0:00:03
2Giovanni Visconti (Ita) Vini Zabu' KTM 0:00:01
3Matthew Holmes (GBr) Lotto Soudal
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Mountain 1 (Cat. 1) Etna - km 150
Pos.Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Jonathan Caicedo (Ecu) EF Pro Cycling 40
2Giovanni Visconti (Ita) Vini Zabu' KTM 18
3Harm Vanhoucke (Bel) Lotto Soudal 12
4Wilco Kelderman (Ned) Team Sunweb 9
5Jakob Fuglsang (Den) Astana Pro Team 6
6Rafal Majka (Pol) Bora-Hansgrohe 4
7Vincenzo Nibali (Ita) Trek-Segafredo 2
8Jonathan Castroviejo Nicolas (Spa) Ineos Grenadiers 1
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