Simon Yates wins at Gran Sasso d'Italia

Simon Yates (Mitchelton-Scott) won stage 9 of the Giro d'Italia at the race's third summit finish at Gran Sasso d'Italia. He out-sprinted Thibaut Pinot (Groupama-FDJ) to extend his GC lead, while Esteban Chaves (Mitchelton-Scott) took third.

It was a slow burner of a stage that saw the tension rev up to a frantic finish over the tough final kilometres. With Fabio Aru (UAE-Team Emirates) and Chris Froome (Team Sky) dropping from the lead group two kilometres from the line, it was Giulio Ciccone (Bardiani-CSF) and Domenico Pozzovivo (Bahrain-Merida) who pushed things on up front.

Only four men - Yates, Pinot, Chaves and Movistar's Richard Carapaz - could follow Pozzovivo's push, but heading into the final 100 metres it was the previously-quiet Yates who picked the right time to strike. He came around the outside of Pinot to take Mitchelton-Scott's second win in four days.

"That was for the boys, the big guys who ride on the front all day," Yates said after the stage. "They've had a couple of tough days, always riding on the front for some very long stages, so that's for those guys.

"From the beginning of the stage we always looked to think maybe if we keep the breakaway close enough there might be a possibility for the stage. Once Astana showed interest, I thought it was possible then, but you never know really deep in the final."

Today's result sees Yates' lead swell to 32 seconds ahead of tomorrow's rest day. Teammate Chaves now lies second, while Tom Dumoulin (Team Sunweb) drops to third, 38 seconds back. Only five riders now lie within a minute of the maglia rosa, while Aru and Froome both lost over a minute and dropped out of the top 10.

"I was having a tough, tough day," Froome said. "I’ve definitely had a rough start to this Giro. So today I was just trying hang on as best I could, obviously make it to the rest day tomorrow and then reevaluate the position from there."

Aru is also looking toward the rest day to recover. He lost seven more seconds than Froome and dropped to 15th place at 2:36. "It has been a difficult day for me. I could not keep up with the pace of the other riders on the final climb," he said. "I didn’t have a good feeling so the result was not what I had hoped. These things happen during the period of 21 days, it is part of our sport. Tomorrow there will be a rest day, then we will be ready to face two weeks during which I am aiming to improve my riding and results."

How it happened

Stage 9 of the Giro d'Italia saw another summit finish, this time to the Apennine ski resort of Gran Sasso d'Italia. Giovanni Battaglin and Francesco Chioccioli are among the past stage winners here, while its last inclusion saw Marco Pantani take victory during his ill-fated 1999 Giro.

The second category climb at Roccaraso (6.9km at 6.5%) was the first obstacle of the 225km day, coming at 118.1km into the stage. Then followed two intermediate sprints in quick succession, at Popoli and Bussi sul Tirino at 161.2km and 167.6km respectively.

At 178.2km, the stage got serious with the first category climb to Calasio (13.5km at a steady 6 per cent). Soon after the official final climb of Gran Sasso d'Italia (another first category climb) started, clocking in at 26.5km at 3.9 per cent. It's not an overly-strenuous set of numbers with much of the climb featuring gentle gradients and false flats, but the main action would surely come in the last 4.5km, which averaged an 8.2 per cent gradient.

A large group shot away in the early kilometres of the stage, with Gianluca Brambilla (Trek-Segafredo), Hugh Carthy (EF Education First-Drapac), Tim Wellens (Lotto-Fix All) and Giovanni Visconti (Bahrain-Merida) among the more notable names to make it.

Other riders in the breakaway were Davide Ballerini, Fausto Masnada (both Androni-Sidermec), Manuele Boaro (Bahrain-Merida), Simone Andreetta (Bardiani-CSF), Cesare Benedetti (Bora-Hansgrohe), Natneal Berhane (Dimension Data), Maxim Belkov (Katusha-Alpecin), Laurent Didier (Trek-Segafredo) and Alex Turrin (Wilier-Selle Italia).

Up front in the break, whose gap fluctuated between six and eight minutes for much of the day, Masnada took the points on Roccaraso in dubious fashion. After dropping his chain, Masnada relied on teammate Ballerini to push him over the line. Berhane was later awarded his points by the race jury.

As Mitchelton-Scott led the pace-setting at the front of the peloton, Ballerini beat Belkov to both sprints, moving into the lead of the Traguardo Volante intermediate sprint competition. Meanwhile, Wilier Triestina sprinter Jakub Mareczko abandoned mid-stage, leaving much of his team languishing at the bottom of the GC standings.

On the lower slopes of Calasio, around 40km from the finish, Astana started to work in service of team leader Miguel Ángel López, quickly taking chunks of time back from the break. As Masnada took maximum points over the top, the gap was a mere four minutes with 30km remaining.

The attacks started in the break over the early kilometres of the day's final climb, with Wellens, who crashed on stage 8, one of the first to drop back. Some 15km from the top, and with several kilometres of false flat up ahead, Masnada ventured off alone with Boaro leading the chase ahead of Cherel, Visconti, Brambilla and Carthy.

As he hit the tough final five kilometres, Masnada's gap to the peloton was 1:30, as the remains of the break were reabsorbed. For a long time it looked touch and go, but the Italian's heroic effort was brought to an end as the slimmed-down favourites group caught him 2.7km from the line.

With Jack Haig (Mitchelton-Scott) still working away as the leaders hit the snowline 2km out, Chris Froome (Team Sky) was dropped. Giulio Ciccone (Bardiani-CSF) was the main man pushing things on with repeated attacks until Domenico Pozzovivo (Bahrain-Merida) took over with 600 metres remaining.

The Italian took Pinot, Yates, Chaves and Richard Carapaz (Movistar) with him, but within sight of the line it was maglia rosa Yates who went for it, sprinting to his third victory of the season, and first at the Giro.

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Full Results

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#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Simon Yates (GBr) Mitchelton-Scott5:54:13
2Thibaut Pinot (Fra) Groupama-FDJRow 1 - Cell 2
3Esteban Chaves (Col) Mitchelton-ScottRow 2 - Cell 2
4Domenico Pozzovivo (Ita) Bahrain-Merida0:00:04
5Richard Carapaz (Ecu) Movistar TeamRow 4 - Cell 2
6Davide Formolo (Ita) Bora-Hansgrohe0:00:10
7George Bennett (NZl) LottoNL-Jumbo0:00:12
8Tom Dumoulin (Ned) Team SunwebRow 7 - Cell 2
9Miguel Angel Lopez (Col) Astana Pro TeamRow 8 - Cell 2
10Giulio Ciccone (Ita) Bardiani CSF0:00:24
11Ben O'Connor (Aus) Dimension Data0:00:26
12Michael Woods (Can) EF Education First-Drapac p/b Cannondale0:00:36
13Patrick Konrad (Aut) Bora-Hansgrohe0:00:38
14Pello Bilbao (Spa) Astana Pro Team0:00:52
15Carlos Betancur (Col) Movistar TeamRow 14 - Cell 2
16Louis Meintjes (RSA) Dimension Data0:01:00
17Wout Poels (Ned) Team Sky0:01:02
18Sébastien Reichenbach (Swi) Groupama-FDJRow 17 - Cell 2
19Alexandre Geniez (Fra) AG2R La MondialeRow 18 - Cell 2
20Sam Oomen (Ned) Team SunwebRow 19 - Cell 2
21Rohan Dennis (Aus) BMC Racing TeamRow 20 - Cell 2
22Mikel Nieve (Spa) Mitchelton-ScottRow 21 - Cell 2
23Chris Froome (GBr) Team Sky0:01:07
24Fabio Aru (Ita) UAE Team Emirates0:01:14
25Sergio Henao (Col) Team Sky0:01:17
26Jan Hirt (Cze) Astana Pro Team0:01:23
27Maximilian Schachmann (Ger) Quick-Step Floors0:01:25
28Kenny Elissonde (Fra) Team Sky0:01:37
29Hubert Dupont (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale0:01:48
30Joe Dombrowski (USA) EF Education First-Drapac p/b Cannondale0:02:02
31José Gonçalves (Por) Katusha-Alpecin0:02:04
32Jack Haig (Aus) Mitchelton-Scott0:02:16
33Darwin Atapuma (Col) UAE Team Emirates0:02:20
34Fausto Masnada (Ita) Androni Giocattoli-Sidermec0:02:27
35Mikael Cherel (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale0:02:35
36Ben Hermans (Bel) Israel Cycling AcademyRow 35 - Cell 2
37Louis Vervaeke (Bel) Team Sunweb0:02:45
38Mattia Cattaneo (Ita) Androni Giocattoli-Sidermec0:02:53
39Quentin Jauregui (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale0:02:56
40François Bidard (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale0:03:14
41Benjamin King (USA) Dimension Data0:04:32
42Felix Grossschartner (Aut) Bora-HansgroheRow 41 - Cell 2
43Rafael Valls Ferri (Spa) Movistar Team0:04:59
44Victor De La Parte (Spa) Movistar Team0:05:27
45Laurens ten Dam (Ned) Team SunwebRow 44 - Cell 2
46Matej Mohoric (Slo) Bahrain-MeridaRow 45 - Cell 2
47Valerio Conti (Ita) UAE Team EmiratesRow 46 - Cell 2
48Chad Haga (USA) Team Sunweb0:05:45
49Alessandro De Marchi (Ita) BMC Racing Team0:06:41
50Hugh Carthy (GBr) EF Education First-Drapac p/b Cannondale0:06:49
51Manuele Boaro (Ita) Bahrain-Merida0:07:48
52Giovanni Visconti (Ita) Bahrain-MeridaRow 51 - Cell 2
53Gianluca Brambilla (Ita) Trek-Segafredo0:08:24
54David De La Cruz (Spa) Team Sky0:08:32
55Roman Kreuziger (Cze) Mitchelton-Scott0:09:40
56Luis León Sanchez (Spa) Astana Pro TeamRow 55 - Cell 2
57Matteo Montaguti (Ita) AG2R La MondialeRow 56 - Cell 2
58Eros Capecchi (Ita) Quick-Step FloorsRow 57 - Cell 2
59Maxim Belkov (Rus) Katusha-AlpecinRow 58 - Cell 2
60Robert Gesink (Ned) LottoNL-Jumbo0:10:30
61Antonio Pedrero (Spa) Movistar Team0:11:29
62Diego Ulissi (Ita) UAE Team Emirates0:12:48
63Manuel Senni (Ita) Bardiani CSF0:12:59
64Rodolfo Torres (Col) Androni Giocattoli-SidermecRow 63 - Cell 2
65Steve Morabito (Swi) Groupama-FDJ0:13:31
66Jan Polanc (Slo) UAE Team Emirates0:14:13
67Jarlinson Pantano (Col) Trek-SegafredoRow 66 - Cell 2
68Cesare Benedetti (Ita) Bora-Hansgrohe0:14:46
69Natnael Berhane (Eri) Dimension Data0:15:31
70Andrey Zeits (Kaz) Astana Pro Team0:16:42
71Vasil Kiryienka (Blr) Team SkyRow 70 - Cell 2
72Tanel Kangert (Est) Astana Pro TeamRow 71 - Cell 2
73Sander Armee (Bel) Lotto Fix AllRow 72 - Cell 2
74Ruben Fernandez (Spa) Movistar Team0:17:49
75Anthony Roux (Fra) Groupama-FDJ0:18:24
76Francesco Gavazzi (Ita) Androni Giocattoli-SidermecRow 75 - Cell 2
77Georg Preidler (Aut) Groupama-FDJRow 76 - Cell 2
78Maurits Lammertink (Ned) Katusha-AlpecinRow 77 - Cell 2
79Rémi Cavagna (Fra) Quick-Step FloorsRow 78 - Cell 2
80Christopher Juul Jensen (Den) Mitchelton-ScottRow 79 - Cell 2
81Tim Wellens (Bel) Lotto Fix AllRow 80 - Cell 2
82Christoph Pfingsten (Ger) Bora-Hansgrohe0:20:12
83Davide Ballerini (Ita) Androni Giocattoli-Sidermec0:21:24
84Laurent Didier (Lux) Trek-Segafredo0:21:29
85Simone Andreetta (Ita) Bardiani CSF0:22:18
86Tony Martin (Ger) Katusha-Alpecin0:23:11
87Niklas Eg (Den) Trek-SegafredoRow 86 - Cell 2
88Manuele Mori (Ita) UAE Team Emirates0:24:09
89Vegard Stake Laengen (Nor) UAE Team EmiratesRow 88 - Cell 2
90Jacques Janse Van Rensburg (RSA) Dimension DataRow 89 - Cell 2
91Davide Villella (Ita) Astana Pro TeamRow 90 - Cell 2
92Niccolo Bonifazio (Ita) Bahrain-MeridaRow 91 - Cell 2
93Nathan Brown (USA) EF Education First-Drapac p/b Cannondale0:24:32
94Nico Denz (Ger) AG2R La Mondiale0:25:58
95Mads Würtz Schmidt (Den) Katusha-AlpecinRow 94 - Cell 2
96Adam Hansen (Aus) Lotto Fix AllRow 95 - Cell 2
97Roy Curvers (Ned) Team SunwebRow 96 - Cell 2
98Jérémy Roy (Fra) Groupama-FDJRow 97 - Cell 2
99Guillaume Boivin (Can) Israel Cycling AcademyRow 98 - Cell 2
100Christopher Hamilton (Aus) Team SunwebRow 99 - Cell 2
101Ryan Gibbons (RSA) Dimension DataRow 100 - Cell 2
102Lars Bak (Den) Lotto Fix AllRow 101 - Cell 2
103Salvatore Puccio (Ita) Team SkyRow 102 - Cell 2
104Victor Campenaerts (Bel) Lotto Fix AllRow 103 - Cell 2
105Eduardo Sepulveda (Arg) Movistar TeamRow 104 - Cell 2
106Marco Frapporti (Ita) Androni Giocattoli-SidermecRow 105 - Cell 2
107Manuel Belletti (Ita) Androni Giocattoli-SidermecRow 106 - Cell 2
108Matthieu Ladagnous (Fra) Groupama-FDJRow 107 - Cell 2
109Alessandro Tonelli (Ita) Bardiani CSFRow 108 - Cell 2
110Mirco Maestri (Ita) Bardiani CSFRow 109 - Cell 2
111Enrico Barbin (Ita) Bardiani CSFRow 110 - Cell 2
112Jos van Emden (Ned) LottoNL-JumboRow 111 - Cell 2
113Gijs Van Hoecke (Bel) LottoNL-JumboRow 112 - Cell 2
114Bert-Jan Lindeman (Ned) LottoNL-JumboRow 113 - Cell 2
115Zakkari Dempster (Aus) Israel Cycling AcademyRow 114 - Cell 2
116Markel Irizar (Spa) Trek-SegafredoRow 115 - Cell 2
117Ruben Plaza (Spa) Israel Cycling AcademyRow 116 - Cell 2
118Jens Debusschere (Bel) Lotto Fix AllRow 117 - Cell 2
119Kilian Frankiny (Swi) BMC Racing TeamRow 118 - Cell 2
120Tosh Van Der Sande (Bel) Lotto Fix AllRow 119 - Cell 2
121Mitchell Docker (Aus) EF Education First-Drapac p/b CannondaleRow 120 - Cell 2
122Tom Scully (NZl) EF Education First-Drapac p/b CannondaleRow 121 - Cell 2
123Baptiste Planckaert (Bel) Katusha-AlpecinRow 122 - Cell 2
124Nicolas Roche (Irl) BMC Racing TeamRow 123 - Cell 2
125Alexey Lutsenko (Kaz) Astana Pro TeamRow 124 - Cell 2
126Enrico Battaglin (Ita) LottoNL-JumboRow 125 - Cell 2
127Andrea Vendrame (Ita) Androni Giocattoli-SidermecRow 126 - Cell 2
128Clement Venturini (Fra) AG2R La MondialeRow 127 - Cell 2
129Krists Neilands (Lat) Israel Cycling AcademyRow 128 - Cell 2
130Jaco Venter (RSA) Dimension DataRow 129 - Cell 2
131Dayer Quintana (Col) Movistar TeamRow 130 - Cell 2
132William Bonnet (Fra) Groupama-FDJRow 131 - Cell 2
133Lennard Hofstede (Ned) Team SunwebRow 132 - Cell 2
134Guy Sagiv (Isr) Israel Cycling AcademyRow 133 - Cell 2
135Christian Knees (Ger) Team SkyRow 134 - Cell 2
136Antonio Nibali (Ita) Bahrain-MeridaRow 135 - Cell 2
137Marco Marcato (Ita) UAE Team EmiratesRow 136 - Cell 2
138Koen Bouwmam (Ned) LottoNL-JumboRow 137 - Cell 2
139Sacha Modolo (Ita) EF Education First-Drapac p/b Cannondale0:26:41
140Viacheslav Kuznetsov (Rus) Katusha-Alpecin0:26:51
141Giuseppe Fonzi (Ita) Wilier Triestina-Selle Italia0:27:16
142Alex Turrin (Ita) Wilier Triestina-Selle ItaliaRow 141 - Cell 2
143Francisco Ventoso (Spa) BMC Racing Team0:27:19
144Sam Bennett (Irl) Bora-Hansgrohe0:28:13
145Ryan Mullen (Irl) Trek-Segafredo0:28:19
146Mads Pedersen (Den) Trek-Segafredo0:28:30
147Fabio Sabatini (Ita) Quick-Step Floors0:30:47
148Elia Viviani (Ita) Quick-Step FloorsRow 147 - Cell 2
149Alex Dowsett (GBr) Katusha-AlpecinRow 148 - Cell 2
150Loïc Vliegen (Bel) BMC Racing TeamRow 149 - Cell 2
151Tom Van Asbroeck (Bel) EF Education First-Drapac p/b CannondaleRow 150 - Cell 2
152Florian Senechal (Fra) Quick-Step FloorsRow 151 - Cell 2
153Kristian Sbaragli (Ita) Israel Cycling AcademyRow 152 - Cell 2
154Marco Coledan (Ita) Wilier Triestina-Selle ItaliaRow 153 - Cell 2
155Igor Anton (Spa) Dimension DataRow 154 - Cell 2
156Jean-Pierre Drucker (Lux) BMC Racing TeamRow 155 - Cell 2
157Frederik Frison (Bel) Lotto Fix AllRow 156 - Cell 2
158Andreas Schillinger (Ger) Bora-HansgroheRow 157 - Cell 2
159Jurgen Roelandts (Bel) BMC Racing TeamRow 158 - Cell 2
160Danny van Poppel (Ned) LottoNL-JumboRow 159 - Cell 2
161Zdenek Stybar (Cze) Quick-Step FloorsRow 160 - Cell 2
162Eugert Zhupa (Alb) Wilier Triestina-Selle ItaliaRow 161 - Cell 2
163Domen Novak (Slo) Bahrain-MeridaRow 162 - Cell 2
164Michael Mørkøv (Den) Quick-Step FloorsRow 163 - Cell 2
165Liam Bertazzo (Ita) Wilier Triestina-Selle ItaliaRow 164 - Cell 2
166Boy van Poppel (Ned) Trek-SegafredoRow 165 - Cell 2
167Paolo Simion (Ita) Bardiani CSF0:31:07
168Svein Tuft (Can) Mitchelton-Scott0:31:10
169Sam Bewley (NZl) Mitchelton-ScottRow 168 - Cell 2
170Jacopo Mosca (Ita) Wilier Triestina-Selle Italia0:31:53
DNFJakub Mareczko (Ita) Wilier Triestina-Selle ItaliaRow 170 - Cell 2
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Points
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResultHeader Cell - Column 3
1Davide Ballerini (Ita) Androni Giocattoli-Sidermec16pts
2Simon Yates (GBr) Mitchelton-Scott15Row 1 - Cell 3
3Thibaut Pinot (Fra) Groupama-FDJ12Row 2 - Cell 3
4Esteban Chaves (Col) Mitchelton-Scott9Row 3 - Cell 3
5Maxim Belkov (Rus) Katusha-Alpecin8Row 4 - Cell 3
6Domenico Pozzovivo (Ita) Bahrain-Merida7Row 5 - Cell 3
7Richard Carapaz (Ecu) Movistar Team6Row 6 - Cell 3
8Davide Formolo (Ita) Bora-Hansgrohe5Row 7 - Cell 3
9George Bennett (NZl) LottoNL-Jumbo4Row 8 - Cell 3
10Tom Dumoulin (Ned) Team Sunweb3Row 9 - Cell 3
11Miguel Angel Lopez (Col) Astana Pro Team2Row 10 - Cell 3
12Alex Turrin (Ita) Wilier Triestina-Selle Italia2Row 11 - Cell 3
13Giulio Ciccone (Ita) Bardiani CSF1Row 12 - Cell 3
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Mountain 1 (Cat 2) Roccaraso, km. 108
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