Hello and welcome to stage 7 of the Giro d'Italia.
Hello and welcome to stage 7 of the Giro d'Italia. Today's the second longest stage of the year's race, 224km from Castrovillari to Alberobello with a profile suited to a couple of different outcomes - a sprint or a breakaway.
We are around 45 minutes from the official roll out and the team busses have all arrived, riders are signing on and the adoring fans have all gathered. Today promises to be another entertaining day at the Giro d'Italia. As you would expect the biggest crowds have gathered around the Bahrain Merida bus with Vincenzo Nibali inside and seeking shelter before the start. The gathering outside the QuickStep Floors bus isn't bad either - with fans looking to get a glimpse of the maglia rosa, on Bob Jungels' young shoulders.
Before we go any further lets take a look at the GC standings coming into today's stage. It's tough at the top (but tougher at the bottom as my old boss use to say) with Jungels leading by just a few seconds over Geraint Thomas and Adam Yates.
1 Bob Jungels (Lux) Quick-Step Floors 28:20:47
2 Geraint Thomas (GBr) Team Sky 0:00:06
3 Adam Yates (GBr) Orica-Scott 0:00:10
4 Vincenzo Nibali (Ita) Bahrain-Merida
5 Domenico Pozzovivo (Ita) AG2R La Mondiale
6 Nairo Quintana (Col) Movistar Team
7 Tom Dumoulin (Ned) Team Sunweb
8 Bauke Mollema (Ned) Trek-Segafredo
9 Tejay Van Garderen (USA) BMC Racing Team
10 Andrey Amador (CRc) Movistar Team
Question of the day: If Adam or Simon Yates falls, gets a paper cut or stubs a toe, does the other twin sense or feel it? Let us know on Twitter @ https://twitter.com/Cyclingnewsfeed
Just the one 4th cat climb on offer today so Polanc will keep control of that jersey for at least one more stage. The points classification is a little tighter. Gaviria leads but should we have a sprint today it could all change. Stuyven of course jumped up the standings yesterday with his second place. He has a real chance of winning the jersey based on the fact that he's a better climber than any of the fast-men around him.
1 Fernando Gaviria (Col) Quick-Step Floors 140 pts
2 Jasper Stuyven (Bel) Trek-Segafredo 137
3 André Greipel (Ger) Lotto Soudal 105
4 Lukas Pöstlberger (Aut) Bora-Hansgrohe 92
5 Kristian Sbaragli (Ita) Dimension Data 76
6 Daniel Teklehaimanot (Eri) Dimension Data 74
7 Silvan Dillier (Swi) BMC Racing Team 68
8 Eugert Zhupa (Alb) Wilier Triestina 60
9 Simone Andreetta (Ita) Bardiani CSF 52
10 Caleb Ewan (Aus) Orica-Scott 50
Don't forget that you can catch up with all of yesterday's action right here. We've a race report, some delightful photography, results and video highlights from our friends at IMG.
We're around 30 minutes from the official start so lie down, relax and let the sports commence.
Adam Yates looked decent on stage 6 and is gunning for the win on stage 8 - the second mountain stage of this year's race. We caught up with the Orica Scott rider yesterday and this is what he had to say.
"I'm not disappointed really, with a stage like this it's always a bit of a gamble whether the sprinters can get up there, or whether it's climbers or punchier riders," Yates told a small group of reporters at the finish line. "I was feeling pretty good at the end there, but the break stayed away, so it is what it is.
He took sixth on the stage, second in the bunch sprint behind Canadian, Michael Woods (Drapac Cannondale).
A lot of people, including our very own Barry Ryan, have been asking how far Bob Jungels can go on GC in this race. He broke through last year and finished 6th overall and he's been incredibly impressive this time around - although none of the GC contenders have really been put until too much pressure.
"It's pretty hard to compare myself to the others because I don't know how they felt. It was a hard climb but there was a lot of wind," Jungels said. "I ended up on the podium in the pink jersey and I didn't think too much of how the others felt."
You can read more about young Jungels, right here.
Sign on closes in around 10 minutes but there's not mistaking that huge cheer as Nibali ventures onto the podium. The Italian is looking for his third Giro crown having won in 2013 and 2016. He's been on the podium on two other occasions but nothing but the win will do for the homegrown favourite.
A few riders have made their way to the start line. There's a relaxed vibe this morning as the peloton reach the point where they've found some rhythm in the race. We're a week in, there's a pecking order in GC and riders are starting to feel a little tired. A lot of the peloton will be looking towards Monday's rest-day already.
We don't just interview riders by the way. Here's the lowdown on Ilnur Zakarin's road bike, courtesy of Josh Evans. It's a Canyon and it's red... and as everyone out there knows, red is the fastest of all the colours. This clearly gives Zakarin an advantage.
@giroditalia Fri, 12th May 2017 09:42:46
@Bahrain_Merida Fri, 12th May 2017 09:42:20
Some problems for the Bahrain Team this morning. According to reports their bus broke down so the riders had to hitch a lift on the team's second main vehicle.
According to other reports Patrick Dempsey is at the start this morning and is a guest of the BMC Racing team. He's an actor... and although I've never been a fan of Star Trek, I thought he was really good in X-Men.
We're almost ready for the start by the way. Let's hope we see some exciting racing from the start of today's stage.
According to the road book:
The final kilometres are fairly complex, as the route runs partly on wide and straight roads, and partly on city roads marked by series of bends and partial narrowings. From 5 to 1.5 km to the finish, the route runs mostly uphill, with a short descent that ends 700 m before the finish. The route climbs slightly in the stage finale, with a few mild bends. The finish line sits on a 100-m long and 7.5-m wide asphalt straight.
Through the neutralized zone we go. The flag will drop shortly and we'll be racing stage 7 of the 2017 Giro d'Italia.
@BMCProTeam Fri, 12th May 2017 09:55:44
@OricaScott Fri, 12th May 2017 10:02:53
On a serious note Ewan is running out of chances in this year's race to win his first stage. He's had the legs a couple of times but either been boxed in or not had the luck needed. I'm not sure if pulling a foot is bad luck or not actually... It's like hitting a post in football/soccer isn't it? It's still a miss regardless of the margin of error. Anyway, the young sprinter has a chance today to make amends.
And we're off. Patrick Dempsey was escorted off the start line - if you were concerned about his reckless attempt to infiltrate the peloton. He even turned up wearing a maglia rosa. Nice try, Pat. We all know that belongs to Jungels. These A-listers think they can do anything.
It's happened again. Just minutes into the stage and three riders have clipped off the front and already established a 1'30 lead over the peloton.
On the move we have:
Fonzi (Wilier Triestina), Ponzi (CCC) and Kozonchuk (Gazprom).
They have two minutes on the peloton already.
We're used to these teams throwing men up the road and Ponzi and co are all too willing to take up the challenge. Well over 200km of racing to go, however, and the peloton are unlikely to let this one gain as much time as the stage 6 break. They had almost nine minutes yesterday.
This gap to the break is only going to rise though and they've already put three minutes into the main field. The sprinters' teams, Orica, Lotto Soudal, Bora and QuickStep will all be happy with this situation as they'll only have to pull back three men later in the stage. Jungels' team will be the first squad to move up and organise a chase but again we've seen a real lack of appetite to get in the move from a number of teams.
In non racing news, Vino and Kolobnev could still find themselves in court over the outcome of the 2010 edition if Liege Bastongne Liege. It's alleged that Vinokourov paid Kolobnev 100,000 Euro to win the race. Both men deny the allegation but money did exchange hands. Here's the latest on that story.
We've racing in the US with the Women's Tour of California up and running and the mens' race start in the coming day. One team with high hopes are Cannondale Drapac, who arrive there with Taylor Phinney and Andrew Talansky. Both have struggled this season and will be looking to ignite their seasons on home soil. Read their quotes and thoughts on the American WorldTour race, right here.
We got in trouble earlier this month for saying the team didn't have a dedicated leader for the Giro. So just to be clear they have two for California. TWO. Not one, but TWO.
209km remaining from 224km
15km into the stage and the fearsome threesome up the road have three minutes on the bunch. Not two. Three.
And as we said, the Women's Tour of California, has already started and Megan Guarnier (Boels Dolmans) took the opening stage. You can find our report, results, photos, all here.
@OricaScott Fri, 12th May 2017 10:32:58
200km remaining from 224km
Just the small matter of 200km remaining in the stage and the break are holding their own at three minutes ahead of the bunch. The main field are taking it easy for now.
Long flat roads that don't really suit the break but they're gobbling up the kilometres as we race through stage 7. The gap is holding steady at 2'45.
Not too much happening in the stage at the moment so I'm going to take a few minutes to reply to some emails. This one seems rather important:
My Name is General John F. Cambell. I have an urgent business proposal for you i want to invest under your care as my business manager, kindly contact me on this address : firstname.lastname@example.org
Patrick Dempsey has provided a quote from this morning. If you're not aware he turned up in a maglia rosa, claiming to be a guest of a team, and tried to join the race. A scene was caused and there were high pitched shouts of 'do you know who I am?' before the actor was asked to leave.
This is Patrick and what he really said. Big cycling fan of course and is a regular at the TOC:
“Cycling always gave me a sense of freedom and going somewhere. The intensity is high at this level but it’s special to be part of it and around it. Cycling is a great way to stay in shape.”
“Eddy Merckx is a legend, he won this race five times and is a nice person. Each generation has a stand out usually but the more I get to know the guys, the more I like all of them, so its hard to pick anyone favourite. There are also really strong female riders as well. I think we need to shout to them and support them a little more too.”
“It’s great to be in Italy and be part of this wonderful event. Celebrating 100 years is spectacular, it’s an epic race.”
Caption: Let go, you're hurting me.
Nairo Quintana (Movistar) spoke briefly to Italian television before the start of the stage.
“The early days have been pretty stressful, including the finish yesterday but we’ve got things under control because of the good team we have here,” the Colombian said.
He refuted a suggestion that he has been hiding...
“In truth there hasn’t been much terrain for me to attack on. There was a lot of wind on Mount Etna. When the right terrain arrives, there will be a lot of great racing for everyone watching.”
Quintana played down that Vincenzo Nibali is his biggest rival.
“It’s normal that the Italian fans support their rider. He’s already won the Giro and I’m sure he’ll be up there when the mountains begin,” he said.
“In Italy there’s always a lot of support for me and they make me feel at home.”
“Nibali is a rival but there are other riders. Thomas is strong and so are many others. Everybody has been careful so far, nobody has lost time, so there are lots of riders we need to watch out for and who can be contenders.”
185km remaining from 224km
Mechanical for Ponzi and that leaves just Kozontchuk and Fonzi out front after 39km of racing. The bunch aren't letting them go above three minutes.
@giroditalia Fri, 12th May 2017 11:10:13
Losing Ponzi will take the wind out of the break's sails, that's for sure, as it cuts a third of their horsepower. The remaining two riders have little option but you plough ahead. The gap is at 3'20.
Giuseppe Fonzi, 25, takes a long pull on the front of the break. He's had some success as a rider, most of it in Asia, and this is his first Grand Tour.
@Cyclingnewsfeed Fri, 12th May 2017 11:20:04
I didn't know this but Dmitry Kozonchuk came through the Rabobank U23 team before having stints at Geox, Rusvelo, Katusha and Gazprom.
Filippo Pozzato (Wilier Triestina) defended the Italian riders after criticism in La Gazzetta dello Sport for failing to make an impact and so far win a stage in their home race.
“We’ve tried to go on the attack every day and in the sprints too but it’s never easy to win. The globalisation of cycling means there are a lot of international riders in the race and raised the level of ability,” he told Italian television.
“Today is a good chance for the sprinters but there’s a short climb with three kilometres to go, which is perfect for a finisseur who wants to try. We’ve got Mareczko for the sprint but if there’s a chance and I’ve got the legs, I’d love to have a go and play my cards.”
165km remaining from 224km
165km to go and QuickStep and Orica are leading the peloton at the moment. They have the leading two riders at 3'41.
They have the peloton strung out as he close in on two hours of racing. Jungels, in pink, in near the front and tapping out a gentle pace as his team control the situation for him.
Already pressure on Italian riders in this year's race. We're only a week into the race and Nibali is a favourite for the maglia rosa.... They do lack a consistent sprinter but Nizzolo could well feature today, although he has had some health issues so far.
At the front of the race there's a real patter as we see Sky huddle around Thomas and Landa, BMC do the same for van Garderen and Bahrain and Movistar look after their GC assets. The break have 3'42 wth 159km to go.
The status quo remains as we see the break toiling to keep their lead intact. The gap holds at 3'50 with 154km to go.
And we pass a sign on the road dedicated to the late Michele Scarponi, who tragically lost his life last month. Astana have come to this race with eight men, choosing not to replace the man who was going to lead them here. A real sign of respect and dignity shown by the squad in what has been a very difficult time for everyone that knew Scarponi.
The conditions are almost perfect today with little in the way of wind. It is overcast but the break press on and Fonzi motions down into a TT position of sorts before his Gazprom companion comes through and takes a turn. Then the Italian drops back to the team car to pick up some food and some advice.
Quick change around with Susan Westemeyer taking over the controls.
145km remaining from 224km
145 km to go and the gap is 4:02
An overpass is full of parked cars and lots of fans watching the race pass under them.
Adam Yates is wearing the white jersey for best young rider, which actually belongs to Bob Jungels. The latter is of course wearing pink these days.
Yates celebrates his time in white with a snack.
The gap is staying right around the 4 minute mark. The field is looking pretty relaxed. Nairo Quintana waves to the camera, others are having a chat and still others are having a bite to eat. With 139.5km still to go there is plenty of time to relax at the moment.
Yesterday's stage winner Sylvian Dillier is now having a long chat with Andre Greipel.
The gap is dropping slightly, now around 3.30.
Such a long stage, flat so far, a not-so-big gap ... things are still very relaxed.
The CAS ruled last summer that Lizzie Deignan's three missed doping controls were not worth giving her a ban. The reasoned decision for that has not yet been released and according to British media, may never be release.
Is the peloton a little too relaxed? The gap is bak up to 4:30.
Fonzi is now waring a backpack. Oh wait it is a feedbag.
He finally unpacks his goodies. "Darn, I was hoping for a cheeseburger today."
A Movistar riders throws a kiss to the TV camera.
111km to go and 3:50
@Ride_Argyle Fri, 12th May 2017 12:40:07
Fernando Gaviria is in magenta today. Will he be in the mix today at the finish? It could well be another sprint.
"Only" 101 km left......
Ciccone checks in with the race doctor's car.
Now that lunch has been eaten and digested, a number of riders are pulling over to the side of the road for a short "nature break".
Adam Yates is moving his way back up through the team cars. We don't know why he was back there.
Now it's back to Daniel...
@Cyclingnewsfeed Fri, 12th May 2017 13:16:07
We're off the highway and onto smaller, perhaps more interesting roads. This will suit the break but they've been out in the wind for so, so long now. 92km to go and the gap is at 3'28.
At the front it's pretty relaxed for Etixx who are looking to set up Gaviria for this third stage win in this year's race. Jungels, in the maglia rosa is a few wheels further up the front, as Orica send another man to the break to cooperate with the pace setting.
Nizzolo, who has had problems with allergies in the race, is near the back of the peloton. The Italian national champion has been suffering throughout the race but he's hanging in there at the moment.
84km remaining from 224km
84km to go and the break are starting to dig deep into their suitcases of courage. I hope they brought more than just carry-ons. They'll need the full allowance of 20kg per person. And then of course you have to pay extra if you bring too much courage and go over the said limit. 'Did you pack this courage yourself, sir?"
A glimpse into the world of Paul Sherwin as he checks in at airports.
We know what happens when British Cycling staff check in at airports but that's another story.
Lotto Soudal! They've joined the fun and put a man on the front of the bunch as we see Belkov taking mechanical assistance at the side of the road. Given the current pace he'll have no problems getting back into the peloton.
In the intermediate sprint Gaviria takes third with Griepel just behind him. 80km to go, so about two hours of racing.
"For me it's all in the past, people have been speaking about it far too much. To be honest it hasn't been nice to read certain things about me," Rosa La Gazzetta dello Sport, looking visibly upset by the polemic.
"It's true, I touched Moreno with my hand but that happens a lot in the peloton during races, we all do it. He reacted aggressively because he was perhaps a bit surprised by me touching him. But he pushed me, I lost my balance and fell on a fan. Fortunately I wasn't hurt but the whole thing has blown up since then."
Jungels has gone back to his team car and a number of other riders have followed suit. Long, flat roads now for the next section of the stage as the gap holds at 3'57 with 75km to go. No tension, no stress, this is the pure definition of a transition stage in the Giro d'Italia.
From here on in the road becomes more undulating in profile and we can see that Fonzi's shoulders are starting to drop ever so slightly. He taps out a pace that suggests he's a fading force before we scan back to see Jungels looking as fresh as a daisy and in the pink jersey.
The break are on the only categorised climb of the day - a 4th cat rise -that shouldn't pose any problems for the riders out three. Fonzi takes the points at the top.
Polanc has moved up and is riding with Jungels. The UAE rider is leading the KOM competition and will be looking to take the remaining points at the top of the climb.
And Polanc took third on the climb as we see the break drop to 3'26 with 68km to go.
The pace on the front is being shared between Orica, QuickStep and Lotto Soudal as we see Ewan being paced back to the peloton after a brief stop at the team car. 62km to go and the gap is down to 3'11.
A bit more intent from QuickStep who have posted fresh legs on the front of the peloton, with 58km to go. The gap has dropped down to 2'40.
Another intermediate sprint coming up and more of a presence from Lotto Soudal. Expect more of challenge from Greipel this time. Stuyven is also looking to get into the mix.
Greipel sat up and Gaviria shows a clean pair of heels to Stuyven.
Fonzi drifts to the back of the break and gives the cameras a shake of the head. Fair play, he's produced a strong ride today and can be proud. Luca Scinto threatened to send riders home but Fonzi has stuck to his task.
44km remaining from 224km
Into the last hour or racing as Formolo goes back to the race doctor to pick up some medicine of some sort. He's the last Cannondale rider to win a WorldTour race - a stage here at the Giro back in 2015. Meanwhile the peloton have the break at 2'32.
The bunch are starting to line out as QuickStep push a little harder on the pedals. It results in few more seconds being shaved off the break's lead as Lotto also move up.
Narrower roads now for the race but it's still advantage to the peloton as they bring the gap down to 1'47 with 37km to go.
It's hard to look past Greipel, Ewan or Gaviria for the stage but there are plenty of other sprinters in the race. One such rider is Sam Bennett. The Irish rider was sick earlier in the race but has started to bounce back and the Paris-Nice stage winner has the credentials to beat the very best. No sign from Bora though as QuickStep and Lotto Soudal continue to share the pace.
32km to go go and the gap is at 1'47 as we see a few more GC teams try and occupy the front of the main field. A race has finally broken out.
Senni, who had great form earlier in the year, drops back to the team car and picks up a few bottles for his teammates. Either that or he's just being greedy.
30km remaining from 224km
30km to go and the gap is now at 1'24. The catch will be made in the next 10km to go because the two leaders have little left in the tank.
Meanwhile here's our latest podcast from the Giro d'Italia. We look back at Mount Etna and then ahead to Blockhaus on stage 9. Listen/download for free, here.
The gap is just over a minute now as more and more teams swarm to the front of the race. The poor breakaway riders are going to be put out of their misery soon enough. Hats off to them though, they made a race of it today.
Five hours into the race as Agnoli takes on bottles for Bahrain. Jungels is right near the front and he's been there all day long.
@Cyclingnewsfeed Fri, 12th May 2017 15:01:49
Just 55 seconds with 26km to go as the peloton take on a small ridge. The pace still isn't full gas as we see Dimension Data and BMC Racing also positioning themselves close to the head of affairs.
37 seconds for the two leaders and the cars have been taken out of the gap. The bunch have eased up slightly as they take on a fresh set of bidons and this allows FDJ, Sky and Sunweb to cover the front of the bunch.23km to go.
It's almost curtains as they race into Circestino with 22km to go. It's uphill for now as we see Lotto lead the bunch and the gap down to 21 seconds.
19km remaining from 224km
The two leaders shake hands and wave to the cameras after their epic effort. They're caught as Orica lead the peloton with 18km to go.
On the right we have Orica, and on the left we have Movistar who are looking after Quintana. Ih the middle of the road are a gaggle of sprinters' teams, and now Bahrain Merida as they look to protect Nibali's GC position.
The road continues to narrow but the pace still isn't that intense at the moment. 16km to go.
Are QuickStep running out of men? They only have one jersey on the front after a long day of controlling the race.
It's the GC teams of Movistar, Bahrain who lead with Orica also in the mix as we see a few more of Gaviria's teammates move closer to the front of the bunch.
There's a split in the bunch as a race official takes a position that puts everyone at risk. No one comes down but that was a scary moment.
11km remaining from 224km
11km to go and the race is full gas now as Orica move up and take control. They take a roundabout as Ewan is around fifth wheel. This is a huge chance for him today.
It's such a technical finale, we're so lucky that the roads are dry, what with all the road furniture.
Bora for the first time have shown their faces as they line out on the right hand side of the peloton. They'll be working for Ireland's Sam Bennett.
Movistar are making a menace of themselves as they rub shoulders with the sprinters teams as we see Quintana right at the front. Here comes QuickStep with 8.3km to go.
Tuft now takes over for Orica but Bora and Movistar have the numbers.
Here come Team Sky for Thomas and Landa. I'm not sure there's enough road for all these teams and riders as they all look to move to the front of the bunch.
Rolland is dropped. It looks like a mechanical for the French rider.
6km remaining from 224km
6km to go!
Thomas has one man with him as the fight for position intensifies dramatically.
A sweeping downhill section now as they race towards an important pinch point.
Around a long left hand corner as Lotto move up. Now it's right and 4.3km to go on the final circuit.
And Howes has attacked. He has a gap.
Don't look back, go go go.
He has about 50m as he road rises. It's Koren from Cannondale, sorry.
The gap moves to around 60m but this is going to be a big ask as Team Sky lead the chase.
Team Sky make the catch as Jungels has to do a lot of work to move up.
2km remaining from 224km
Just over 2km to go.
The sprint teams are looking to organise their leadouts. Greipel is on his own but moves on Gaviria's wheel.
2km to go.
Now it's Orica who lead. Ewan is well placed.
1.2km to go.
Dimension Data lead and Bora are there, so is Ewan and Gaviria and Greipel.
Bora lead out but Orica have numbers as they take a right.
It's going to be Bora against Orica, a straight shoot out.
Ewan leads around the corner but here comes Gaviria, from no where.
It's Ewan, Bennett and Gaviria going head to head with 50m to go.
It's Ewan. He takes his first Giro stage win.
He had the best line but Gaviria was closing and closing. Greipel just didn't have the legs and Gaviria had to come around the German.It was too late for the QuickStep rider.
And Ewan had too much, just for Bennett, who I think has to settle for third on the stage.
Confirmation: Ewan wins the stage ahead of Gaviria and Bennett. Greipel a distant fourth on the day. Jungels keeps his maglia rosa.
That's a massive win for Ewan and Orica Scott. No doubt that the pressure was mounting on the Australian sprinter's shoulders after a number of near misses.
A jubilant Matt White allows himself a short fist-bump and states how important it was to open the from the front around that last corner.
Gaviria looked just as quick, if not quicker, but he had too much ground to make up in the finale. Ewan was perfectly positioned and finished the job off.
1 Caleb Ewan (Aus) Orica-Scott 5:35:18
2 Fernando Gaviria (Col) Quick-Step Floors
3 Sam Bennett (Irl) Bora-Hansgrohe
4 André Greipel (Ger) Lotto Soudal
5 Jasper Stuyven (Bel) Trek-Segafredo
6 Ryan Gibbons (RSA) Dimension Data
7 Enrico Battaglin (Ita) Team LottoNl-Jumbo 0:00:02
8 Rüdiger Selig (Ger) Bora-Hansgrohe
9 Alexey Tsatevich (Rus) Gazprom-Rusvelo
10 Vincenzo Nibali (Ita) Bahrain-Merida
General classification after stage 7
1 Bob Jungels (Lux) Quick-Step Floors 33:56:07
2 Geraint Thomas (GBr) Team Sky 0:00:10
3 Adam Yates (GBr) Orica-Scott
4 Vincenzo Nibali (Ita) Bahrain-Merida
5 Domenico Pozzovivo (Ita) AG2R La Mondiale
6 Tom Dumoulin (Ned) Team Sunweb
7 Nairo Quintana (Col) Movistar Team
8 Bauke Mollema (Ned) Trek-Segafredo
9 Andrey Amador (CRc) Movistar Team
10 Tejay Van Garderen (USA) BMC Racing Team
Fernando Gaviria (Quick-Step Floors)
“I think we made a mistake in the finale but Caleb Ewan was stronger today.He deserved to win because I was unlucky and didn’t have the legs. I couldn’t get back to fight for the win today. I can only congratulate Orica-Scott today.”
Caleb Ewan (Orica-Scott)
“It’s been a little bit difficult for us in the first part of the Giro d’Italia. I came close and guys worked really hard, so I’m happy to finally win.”
“It was a really close sprint. I had to do some work with three kilometres to go so I was a little tired for the sprint. But Luka (Mezgec) did a great lead out, so it was perfect.”
Sam Bennett (Bora)
It was a pretty hectic final, and it was sketchy. There was a lot of shouldering but we didn’t do anything wrong. I don’t really know what happened. The guy did an amazing job for me, I just wish that I could have got the win for them there today. I just couldn’t get around him in the last moment. Close but no cigar. The guys did a fantastic job and they’re riding beyond their years because we’ve actually got a pretty young crew here.
A reminder that you can download/listen to our latest podcast featuring Cioni, Sciandri and Guidi as we review Etna and then look ahead to Sunday's stage to Blockhaus. The episode is right here.
And here are our jam-packed finish line quotes from the stage. A lot of tension out there on the line.
Bob Jungels (Quick-Step Floors) - race leader
"All the finals are pretty tricky. it was a nice day then the last 10km were pretty crazy. We had to take a lot of risks and sometimes a lot of risks for nothing.”
Giacomo Nizzolo (Trek-Segafredo)
“Unfortunately I’m suffering with asthma related allergies at the moment. I suspect there’s also something else, so we’re going to do some tests to see if I’ve got a virus going on.”
“It’s a really pity to see this finish and not be up there fighting for the win. It suited me but there’s nothing I can do for now. I’m fighting just to stay in the peloton.
“I don’t know if I’ll have to quit the Giro. I’m fighting on but I can’t do the impossible if I’m ill.”
You can now catch our stage 7 video race highlights, right here too.
You'll want the correct link for those video highlights, won't you. Here you go.
And with that I think we'll close out live for today. Remember you can find our complete coverage from today's stage, right here. There's a report, a video, a podcast, some photos, results and of course a lot of love.
We'll be back tomorrow. See you then.
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Best bike insurance: Our pick of the best policies for cyclists of all disciplinesThe best bike insurance to keep you covered, whether you're a seasoned athlete or a casual commuter
Wiggle Black Friday: Our predictions and today's best Wiggle cycling dealsWhen do Wiggle Black Friday deals begin? If our predictions are correct, it's sooner than you think!
De Gendt bares his soul in intimate autobiographyBelgian opens up about depression, thoughts of retirement and his box of magic tricks for making attacks
Best waterproof cycling jackets for 2020: cycling jackets to keep you dry when the weather turns wetWhether it's drizzle or downpour, the best waterproof cycling jackets keep the moisture out on damp days
Vuelta a España: Roglic rebounds to win stage 8 on Alto de MoncalvilloCarapaz, Martin, Carthy lose time after attack
Mavic Ultimate Merino bib shorts reviewMavic’s Ultimate Merino bib shorts are potentially super comfortable and cosy intermediate weather winners, but have they gone too far with the pad thickness?
Hitec Products renews core roster for 2021Norwegian team bring in four new riders
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