Giro d'Italia: Gaviria gets his hat-trick on stage 12

Fernando Gaviria (Quick-Step Floors) claimed the third stage victory of his debut Grand Tour as he blew away the other sprinters on stage 12 of the Giro d'Italia.

The Colombian, who won a reduced group sprint on stage 3 and a full bunch kick on stage 5, had cause for concern when Max Richeze punctured with 15km remaining but the Argentinian came back to provide a lead-out so strong he himself finished fifth.

Jakub Mareczko (Wilier-Selle Italia) finished in second place for the second time in this Giro, taking Gaviria's wheel in the final kilometre but was unable to come around him. Sam Bennett was third, and the Irishman's disappointment will be felt all the more keenly given the way his Bora-Hansgrohe team dominated the final five kilometres.

Stage 2 winner Andre Greipel (Lotto Soudal) found himself badly positioned and he sat up as the neared the line, taking eighth place, while Caleb Ewan (Orica-Scott), the other sprint winner of this Giro, wasn't in the frame or the top 10 at all.

"I had a little moment where I was worried and I didn't know how he would do, but he did it," said Gaviria of Richeze in his post-race TV interview.

Wearing the maglia ciclamino as leader of the points classification, after extending his lead at the intermediate sprints as well as the finish, he was asked if he felt he was the best sprinter at the Giro.

"I'm not sure about the best," he replied. "The best sprinter in this Giro is Andre Greipel. He's won more stages in his career than me and won more stages of the Giro. I've maybe got the better legs at the moment, but he's the better sprinter."

For Bennett, the disappointment was palpable as he made it a treble of third places. His teammates held their position on the front of the bunch in the closing kilometres, but Richeze got the jump out of a left-hand bend with a few hundred metres to go, delivering Gaviria almost all the way to the line.

"I made a slight mistake in the final, I wasn't expecting Quick-Step to come from behind like that, and I went on the wrong side of Rudi [Selig]. I couldn't make the right call in that second and it cost me the top result again," Bennett told Eurosport. "I'm sorry for seeming down about it, but we came here to try and get wins and when the team is doing such a good job I just feel like I'm letting them down."

It was a lazy day as far as the general classification was concerned, with race leader Tom Dumoulin (Sunweb) letting the sprinters' teams control the longest stage of the Giro at 229km, where two modest climbs in the opening half were followed by over 100km of flat. There was, however, a small split in the peloton in the high-speed finale, and Domenico Pozzovivo (AG2R La Mondiale) was the main beneficiary, gaining six seconds to move up one place into eighth at the expense of Tanel Kangert (Astana).

"It was a tailwind in the final so it was really fast, but the rest of the day was quite relaxed, no stress, so it was good," said Dumoulin. "Tomorrow will be another sprint day. I hope to just survive that without any troubles, and we'll look forward to the weekend."

How it unfolded

There wasn't a huge fight to get into the breakaway on such a long, hot and fairly flat day. One man who had no shortage of motivation, however, was Mirco Maestri, who is from the stage finish town of Reggio Emilia. He missed the initial move that saw Sergey Firsanov (Gazprom-Rusvelo) and Marco Marcato (UAE Team Emirates) off the front in the opening kilometres but managed to make the bridge after a few minutes, ensuring a manageable three-man group for the peloton to control on a long day in the saddle.

The trio quickly established a lead of seven minutes, but that started to fall once they hit the first climb of the day, the second-category Colle di Casaglia. Back in the bunch, Greipel's Lotto Soudal team led the way, setting a pace that didn't worry any of the sprinters, until they neared the top, whereupon Dimension Data took over to tee up Omar Fraile for the remaining KOM points. After his day in the breakaway and stage win yesterday, the Spaniard had drawn level on points in the mountains classification with Jan Polanc, and the pair went head-to-head in a dash for the banner. Fraile took it, all but ensuring he'd be taking the blue jersey off Polanc at the end of the stage.

There was little interest in the points amongst the breakaway, and that was the same for the intermediate sprint that came after a short descent and section of flat. Gaviria did, however, clip off the front of the peloton to extend his lead in the points classification, though no one else seemed bothered.

The pace had been increased in the peloton and the gap was down to below four minutes as the riders hit the second climb of the day, the third-category Valico Appenninico, though it grew again on the gentle motorway slopes of the climb itself as Quick-Step set a relaxed rhythm.

The KOM marker, 120km from the finish, went uncontested in both the break and the bunch, while the second intermediate sprint, positioned at the bottom of the gentle descent, went the same way as the first.

By that point, Lotto Soudal, Quick-Step, Orica-Scott, and Bora-Hansgrohe all had riders at the head of the peloton to control the gap to the breakaway, and it was down to below three minutes with 40km to go. No need for urgency.

The pace did soon ramp up, though, and the gap started to tumble, with the peloton lining out under the pressure. The break was just half a minute out front going into the final 15km and the foot was taken off the gas slightly to let them hang out there for a few more kilometres, which allowed Gaviria's lead-out man, Max Richeze, to rejoin after a puncture.

If Marcato and Firsanov knew the game was up, Maestri wanted to put on a show as he rode into his hometown of Reggio Emilia, and he attacked his companions with 13km to go, delaying the inevitable for a few for kilometres.

The catch was made with 7km to go, by which point the sprint trains were rubbing shoulders with the GC teams who were trying to keep their leaders out of trouble.

In the final 5km, Nairo Quintana's Movistar team led the way, but Bennett's Bora soon took control with almost every team member in a single file line. Lotto Soudal set up shop on the right-hand side under the 3km to go banner, while Quick-Step soon moved up on the left.

Eugert Zhupa (Wilier Selle Italia) tried to throw the cat among the pigeons in the final couple of kilometres with a solo flyer, but Bora remained calm and brought him back for the final kilometre. There was a left-hand bend with around 400 metres to go and though Bennett's lead-out man Rudi Selig led the way, Richeze had taken the Irishman's wheel and sprang past the Bora duo once they were all through the bend.

Gaviria remained patient and launched his sprint with 100 metres to go, making no mistake as he continued what has been a dream Grand Tour debut, with another opportunity on the horizon tomorrow.

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Full Results

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#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Fernando Gaviria (Col) Quick-Step Floors5:18:55
2Jakub Mareczko (Ita) Wilier TriestinaRow 1 - Cell 2
3Sam Bennett (Irl) Bora-HansgroheRow 2 - Cell 2
4Phil Bauhaus (Ger) Team SunwebRow 3 - Cell 2
5Maximiliano Richeze (Arg) Quick-Step FloorsRow 4 - Cell 2
6Ryan Gibbons (RSA) Dimension DataRow 5 - Cell 2
7Sacha Modolo (Ita) UAE Team EmiratesRow 6 - Cell 2
8André Greipel (Ger) Lotto SoudalRow 7 - Cell 2
9Jasper Stuyven (Bel) Trek-SegafredoRow 8 - Cell 2
10Roberto Ferrari (Ita) UAE Team EmiratesRow 9 - Cell 2
11Enrico Barbin (Ita) Bardiani CSFRow 10 - Cell 2
12Viacheslav Kuznetsov (Rus) Katusha-AlpecinRow 11 - Cell 2
13Aleksei Tcatevich (Rus) Gazprom – RusveloRow 12 - Cell 2
14Maciej Paterski (Pol) CCC Sprandi PolkowiceRow 13 - Cell 2
15Rüdiger Selig (Ger) Bora-HansgroheRow 14 - Cell 2
16Luka Mezgec (Slo) Orica-ScottRow 15 - Cell 2
17Adam Yates (GBr) Orica-ScottRow 16 - Cell 2
18Domenico Pozzovivo (Ita) AG2R La MondialeRow 17 - Cell 2
19Vincenzo Albanese (Ita) Bardiani CSF0:00:06
20Vincenzo Nibali (Ita) Bahrain-MeridaRow 19 - Cell 2
21Andrey Amador (CRc) Movistar TeamRow 20 - Cell 2
22Luka Pibernik (Slo) Bahrain-MeridaRow 21 - Cell 2
23Nairo Quintana (Col) Movistar TeamRow 22 - Cell 2
24Jan Polanc (Slo) UAE Team EmiratesRow 23 - Cell 2
25Daniel Teklehaimanot (Eri) Dimension DataRow 24 - Cell 2
26Tobias Ludvigsson (Swe) FDJRow 25 - Cell 2
27Davide Formolo (Ita) Cannondale-DrapacRow 26 - Cell 2
28Laurens De Plus (Bel) Quick-Step FloorsRow 27 - Cell 2
29Kanstantsin Siutsou (Blr) Bahrain-MeridaRow 28 - Cell 2
30Davide Villella (Ita) Cannondale-DrapacRow 29 - Cell 2
31Maxime Monfort (Bel) Lotto SoudalRow 30 - Cell 2
32José Gonçalves (Por) Katusha-AlpecinRow 31 - Cell 2
33Matteo Montaguti (Ita) AG2R La MondialeRow 32 - Cell 2
34Joey Rosskopf (USA) BMC Racing TeamRow 33 - Cell 2
35Kristijan Koren (Slo) Cannondale-DrapacRow 34 - Cell 2
36Gorka Izagirre (Spa) Movistar TeamRow 35 - Cell 2
37Dario Cataldo (Ita) Astana Pro TeamRow 36 - Cell 2
38Bauke Mollema (Ned) Trek-SegafredoRow 37 - Cell 2
39Tom Dumoulin (Ned) Team SunwebRow 38 - Cell 2
40Bob Jungels (Lux) Quick-Step FloorsRow 39 - Cell 2
41Tanel Kangert (Est) Astana Pro TeamRow 40 - Cell 2
42Jan Hirt (Cze) CCC Sprandi PolkowiceRow 41 - Cell 2
43Ilnur Zakarin (Rus) Katusha-AlpecinRow 42 - Cell 2
44Thibaut Pinot (Fra) FDJRow 43 - Cell 2
45Rudy Molard (Fra) FDJRow 44 - Cell 2
46Enrico Battaglin (Ita) Team LottoNl-JumboRow 45 - Cell 2
47Andrey Zeits (Kaz) Astana Pro TeamRow 46 - Cell 2
48Patrick Konrad (Aut) Bora-HansgroheRow 47 - Cell 2
49Jasper De Buyst (Bel) Lotto SoudalRow 48 - Cell 2
50Rui Costa (Por) UAE Team EmiratesRow 49 - Cell 2
51Jos Van Emden (Ned) Team LottoNl-JumboRow 50 - Cell 2
52Matej Mohoric (Slo) UAE Team EmiratesRow 51 - Cell 2
53Steven Kruijswijk (Ned) Team LottoNl-JumboRow 52 - Cell 2
54Simone Petilli (Ita) UAE Team EmiratesRow 53 - Cell 2
55Matthieu Ladagnous (Fra) FDJRow 54 - Cell 2
56William Bonnet (Fra) FDJRow 55 - Cell 2
57Manuele Boaro (Ita) Bahrain-MeridaRow 56 - Cell 2
58Georg Preidler (Aut) Team SunwebRow 57 - Cell 2
59Tejay Van Garderen (USA) BMC Racing TeamRow 58 - Cell 2
60Stef Clement (Ned) Team LottoNl-JumboRow 59 - Cell 2
61Lukas Pöstlberger (Aut) Bora-HansgroheRow 60 - Cell 2
62Clement Chevrier (Fra) AG2R La MondialeRow 61 - Cell 2
63François Bidard (Fra) AG2R La MondialeRow 62 - Cell 2
64Cristian Rodriguez (Spa) Wilier TriestinaRow 63 - Cell 2
65Simone Ponzi (Ita) CCC Sprandi PolkowiceRow 64 - Cell 2
66Eugenio Alafaci (Ita) Trek-SegafredoRow 65 - Cell 2
67Ben Hermans (Bel) BMC Racing TeamRow 66 - Cell 2
68Francisco Ventoso (Spa) BMC Racing TeamRow 67 - Cell 2
69Filippo Pozzato (Ita) Wilier TriestinaRow 68 - Cell 2
70Michal Golas (Pol) Team SkyRow 69 - Cell 2
71Peter Stetina (USA) Trek-SegafredoRow 70 - Cell 2
72Bram Tankink (Ned) Team LottoNl-JumboRow 71 - Cell 2
73Victor De La Parte (Spa) Movistar TeamRow 72 - Cell 2
74Twan Castelijns (Ned) Team LottoNl-JumboRow 73 - Cell 2
75Ben Gastauer (Lux) AG2R La MondialeRow 74 - Cell 2
76Ivan Savitckii (Rus) Gazprom – RusveloRow 75 - Cell 2
77Matvey Mamykin (Rus) Katusha-AlpecinRow 76 - Cell 2
78Enrico Gasparotto (Ita) Bahrain-MeridaRow 77 - Cell 2
79Simon Geschke (Ger) Team SunwebRow 78 - Cell 2
80Steve Morabito (Swi) FDJRow 79 - Cell 2
81Tomasz Marczynski (Pol) Lotto SoudalRow 80 - Cell 2
82Caleb Ewan (Aus) Orica-ScottRow 81 - Cell 2
83Daniele Bennati (Ita) Movistar TeamRow 82 - Cell 2
84Davide Martinelli (Ita) Quick-Step Floors0:00:18
85Lukasz Owsian (Pol) CCC Sprandi Polkowice0:00:20
86Kristian Sbaragli (Ita) Dimension Data0:00:22
87Eugert Zhupa (Alb) Wilier Triestina0:00:23
88Pavel Brutt (Rus) Gazprom – RusveloRow 87 - Cell 2
89Laurens Ten Dam (Ned) Team Sunweb0:00:26
90Pello Bilbao (Spa) Astana Pro TeamRow 89 - Cell 2
91Alex Howes (USA) Cannondale-Drapac0:00:28
92Jacques Janse Van Rensburg (RSA) Dimension DataRow 91 - Cell 2
93Adam James Hansen (Aus) Lotto SoudalRow 92 - Cell 2
94Maxim Belkov (Rus) Katusha-AlpecinRow 93 - Cell 2
95Jan Bárta (Cze) Bora-HansgroheRow 94 - Cell 2
96Moreno Hofland (Ned) Lotto SoudalRow 95 - Cell 2
97Iljo Keisse (Bel) Quick-Step Floors0:00:31
98Diego Rosa (Ita) Team SkyRow 97 - Cell 2
99Geraint Thomas (GBr) Team SkyRow 98 - Cell 2
100Salvatore Puccio (Ita) Team SkyRow 99 - Cell 2
101José Mendes (Por) Bora-HansgroheRow 100 - Cell 2
102Michael Woods (Can) Cannondale-DrapacRow 101 - Cell 2
103Jurgen Van Den Broeck (Bel) Team LottoNl-JumboRow 102 - Cell 2
104Michal Schlegel (Cze) CCC Sprandi PolkowiceRow 103 - Cell 2
105Mikel Landa (Spa) Team SkyRow 104 - Cell 2
106Ruben Plaza (Spa) Orica-ScottRow 105 - Cell 2
107Ángel Vicioso (Spa) Katusha-AlpecinRow 106 - Cell 2
108Alexander Edmondson (Aus) Orica-Scott0:00:38
109Vasil Kiryienka (Blr) Team Sky0:00:49
110Dries Devenyns (Bel) Quick-Step Floors0:00:58
111Michael Hepburn (Aus) Orica-ScottRow 110 - Cell 2
112Gregor Mühlberger (Aut) Bora-HansgroheRow 111 - Cell 2
113Hubert Dupont (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale0:01:13
114Lars Ytting Bak (Den) Lotto Soudal0:01:21
115Victor Campenaerts (Bel) Team LottoNl-Jumbo0:01:25
116Matteo Busato (Ita) Wilier Triestina0:01:26
117Valerio Agnoli (Ita) Bahrain-Merida0:01:32
118Jesper Hansen (Den) Astana Pro TeamRow 117 - Cell 2
119Cesare Benedetti (Ita) Bora-HansgroheRow 118 - Cell 2
120Jan Tratnik (Slo) CCC Sprandi Polkowice0:01:38
121Mirco Maestri (Ita) Bardiani CSF0:01:42
122Tom Stamsnijder (Ned) Team SunwebRow 121 - Cell 2
123Giulio Ciccone (Ita) Bardiani CSFRow 122 - Cell 2
124Jose Herrada (Spa) Movistar TeamRow 123 - Cell 2
125Jérémy Roy (Fra) FDJRow 124 - Cell 2
126Giovanni Visconti (Ita) Bahrain-MeridaRow 125 - Cell 2
127Natnael Berhane (Eri) Dimension DataRow 126 - Cell 2
128Quentin Jauregui (Fra) AG2R La MondialeRow 127 - Cell 2
129Kenny Elissonde (Fra) Team SkyRow 128 - Cell 2
130Sébastien Reichenbach (Swi) FDJRow 129 - Cell 2
131Julien Berard (Fra) AG2R La MondialeRow 130 - Cell 2
132Sindre Skjøstad Lunke (Nor) Team SunwebRow 131 - Cell 2
133Manuel Quinziato (Ita) BMC Racing TeamRow 132 - Cell 2
134Jose Rojas (Spa) Movistar TeamRow 133 - Cell 2
135Tom-Jelte Slagter (Ned) Cannondale-DrapacRow 134 - Cell 2
136Martijn Keizer (Ned) Team LottoNl-JumboRow 135 - Cell 2
137Valerio Conti (Ita) UAE Team EmiratesRow 136 - Cell 2
138Winner Anacona (Col) Movistar TeamRow 137 - Cell 2
139Julien Bernard (Fra) Trek-SegafredoRow 138 - Cell 2
140Igor Anton (Spa) Dimension DataRow 139 - Cell 2
141Chad Haga (USA) Team SunwebRow 140 - Cell 2
142Manuel Senni (Ita) BMC Racing TeamRow 141 - Cell 2
143Paolo Tiralongo (Ita) Astana Pro TeamRow 142 - Cell 2
144Julen Amezqueta (Spa) Wilier TriestinaRow 143 - Cell 2
145Sebastian Henao (Col) Team SkyRow 144 - Cell 2
146Dmitriy Kozontchuk (Rus) Gazprom – RusveloRow 145 - Cell 2
147Alexander Foliforov (Rus) Gazprom – RusveloRow 146 - Cell 2
148Sergey Lagutin (Rus) Gazprom – RusveloRow 147 - Cell 2
149Branislau Samoilau (Blr) CCC Sprandi PolkowiceRow 148 - Cell 2
150Dylan Teuns (Bel) BMC Racing TeamRow 149 - Cell 2
151Silvan Dillier (Swi) BMC Racing TeamRow 150 - Cell 2
152Robert Kiserlovski (Cro) Katusha-AlpecinRow 151 - Cell 2
153Mads Pedersen (Den) Trek-SegafredoRow 152 - Cell 2
154Luis León Sanchez (Spa) Astana Pro TeamRow 153 - Cell 2
155Benoit Vaugrenard (Fra) FDJRow 154 - Cell 2
156Hugh Carthy (GBr) Cannondale-DrapacRow 155 - Cell 2
157Joe Dombrowski (USA) Cannondale-DrapacRow 156 - Cell 2
158Eros Capecchi (Ita) Quick-Step FloorsRow 157 - Cell 2
159Franco Pellizotti (Ita) Bahrain-MeridaRow 158 - Cell 2
160Sergey Firsanov (Rus) Gazprom – Rusvelo0:02:15
161Johann Van Zyl (RSA) Dimension Data0:02:17
162Philip Deignan (Irl) Team SkyRow 161 - Cell 2
163Daniel Martinez (Col) Wilier TriestinaRow 162 - Cell 2
164Zhandos Bizhigitov (Kaz) Astana Pro TeamRow 163 - Cell 2
165Felix Großschartner (Aut) CCC Sprandi Polkowice0:02:26
166Pierre Rolland (Fra) Cannondale-DrapacRow 165 - Cell 2
167Evgeny Shalunov (Rus) Gazprom – Rusvelo0:02:33
168Simone Andreetta (Ita) Bardiani CSF0:02:47
169Ivan Rovny (Rus) Gazprom – Rusvelo0:03:34
170Rory Sutherland (Aus) Movistar TeamRow 169 - Cell 2
171Jesus Hernandez (Spa) Trek-SegafredoRow 170 - Cell 2
172Omar Fraile (Spa) Dimension DataRow 171 - Cell 2
173Alberto Losada (Spa) Katusha-AlpecinRow 172 - Cell 2
174Edward Ravasi (Ita) UAE Team EmiratesRow 173 - Cell 2
175Svein Tuft (Can) Orica-ScottRow 174 - Cell 2
176Bart De Clercq (Bel) Lotto SoudalRow 175 - Cell 2
177Sean De Bie (Bel) Lotto SoudalRow 176 - Cell 2
178Marcin Bialoblocki (Pol) CCC Sprandi PolkowiceRow 177 - Cell 2
179Marco Marcato (Ita) UAE Team Emirates0:03:40
180Lorenzo Rota (Ita) Bardiani CSF0:04:46
181Nicola Boem (Ita) Bardiani CSFRow 180 - Cell 2
182Pieter Serry (Bel) Quick-Step Floors0:04:52
183Carlos Verona (Spa) Orica-Scott0:04:54
184Christopher Juul Jensen (Den) Orica-ScottRow 183 - Cell 2
185Ilia Koshevoy (Blr) Wilier Triestina0:08:00
186Giuseppe Fonzi (Ita) Wilier TriestinaRow 185 - Cell 2
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#Rider Name (Country) TeamResultHeader Cell - Column 3
1Fernando Gaviria (Col) Quick-Step Floors56pts
2Jakub Mareczko (Ita) Wilier Triestina35Row 1 - Cell 3
3Mirco Maestri (Ita) Bardiani CSF32Row 2 - Cell 3
4Marco Marcato (Ita) UAE Team Emirates32Row 3 - Cell 3
5Sam Bennett (Irl) Bora-Hansgrohe25Row 4 - Cell 3
6Phil Bauhaus (Ger) Team Sunweb18Row 5 - Cell 3
7Maximiliano Richeze (Arg) Quick-Step Floors18Row 6 - Cell 3
8Sergey Firsanov (Rus) Gazprom – Rusvelo16Row 7 - Cell 3
9Ryan Gibbons (RSA) Dimension Data12Row 8 - Cell 3
10Sacha Modolo (Ita) UAE Team Emirates10Row 9 - Cell 3
11André Greipel (Ger) Lotto Soudal8Row 10 - Cell 3
12Jasper Stuyven (Bel) Trek-Segafredo7Row 11 - Cell 3
13Roberto Ferrari (Ita) UAE Team Emirates6Row 12 - Cell 3
14Enrico Barbin (Ita) Bardiani CSF5Row 13 - Cell 3
15Viacheslav Kuznetsov (Rus) Katusha-Alpecin4Row 14 - Cell 3
16Aleksei Tcatevich (Rus) Gazprom – Rusvelo3Row 15 - Cell 3
17Iljo Keisse (Bel) Quick-Step Floors3Row 16 - Cell 3
18Maciej Paterski (Pol) CCC Sprandi Polkowice2Row 17 - Cell 3
19Davide Martinelli (Ita) Quick-Step Floors2Row 18 - Cell 3
20Rüdiger Selig (Ger) Bora-Hansgrohe1Row 19 - Cell 3
21Eros Capecchi (Ita) Quick-Step Floors1Row 20 - Cell 3
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Mountain 1 (Cat. 2) - Colla Di Casaglia, km. 62
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResultHeader Cell - Column 3
1Sergey Firsanov (Rus) Gazprom – Rusvelo15pts
2Mirco Maestri (Ita) Bardiani CSF8Row 1 - Cell 3
3Marco Marcato (Ita) UAE Team Emirates6Row 2 - Cell 3
4Omar Fraile (Spa) Dimension Data4Row 3 - Cell 3
5Jan Polanc (Slo) UAE Team Emirates2<