Caleb Ewan claimed his second career win on the Giro d’Italia when he prevailed in the eighth stage, a 239-km ride from Tortorelo Lido on Saturday.
The Lotto Soudal rider, a stage winner in 2017, was perfectly positioned after a tight curve 200 meters from the line and beat Italian champion Elia Viviani (Deceuninck-Quick-Step) in a short sprint.
Pascal Ackermann (Bora-Hansgrohe), who leads the points classification, took third place.
“I have a lot of pressure to win races (since his move from Michelton-Scott) and to win here means the absolute world to me,” said Ewan, who had finished in the top five on three occasions in the first seven stages of this year’s Giro.
The day was marked by two powerful rollers launching a sustained long-range break from the opening minutes with Marco Frapporti and Damiano Cima spending 200km out in front.
The diminutive Ewan’s new team had spent much of the day keeping tabs on their long range escape however, signalling their intent and the powerfully built Sydneysider was overcome with emotion after several near misses so far.
“We have been trying to win every day, and I’m happy to repay the team,” said the visibly relieved Ewan. “I wasn’t feeling that good, so I waited and had a good kick and came round them (Akermann and Viviani).”
Sunday’s stage could prove to be key with a 34.8km individual time-trial awaiting the riders with poor weather and undulating terrain expected on the road to San Marino.
Providing an extra twist Sunday will be a 6.5 percent incline over one of the final sections, a potential foretaste of the mountainous sections which have been packed in to the latter part of the Giro.
Giro d’Italia 2019 – stage 8 results (Tortoreto Lido – Pesaro):
|1||Caleb Ewan (Lotto Soudal)|
|2||Elia Viviani (Deceuninck-Quick-Step)|
|3||Pascal Ackermann (Bora-hansgrohe)|
|4||Fabio Sabatini (Deceuninck-Quick-Step)|
|5||Manuel Belletti (Androni Giocattoli-Sidermec)|
|6||Arnaud Demare (Groupama-FDJ)|
|7||Davide Cimolai (Israel Cycling Academy)|
|8||Marco Canola (Nippo-Vini Fantini-Faizane)|
|9||Giacomo Nizzolo (Dimension Data)|
|10||Rüdiger Selig (Bora-hansgrohe)|
|11||José Joaquin Rojas (Movistar)|
|12||Valerio Agnoli (Bahrain-Merida)|
|13||Paul Martens (Jumbo-Visma)|
|14||Michael Gogl (Trek-Segafredo)|
|15||Andrey Zeits (Astana)|
|16||Amaro Antunes (CCC)|
|17||Davide Formolo (Bora-hansgrohe)|
|18||Primoz Roglic (Jumbo-Visma)|
|19||Bob Jungels (Deceuninck-Quick-Step)|
|20||Richard Carapaz (Movistar)|
Giro d’Italia 2019 – general classification after stage 8:
|1||Valerio Conti (UAE Team Emirates)|
|2||José Joaquin Rojas (Movistar)|
|3||Giovanni Carboni (Bardiani-CSF)|
|4||Nans Peters (AG2R La Mondiale)|
|5||Valentin Madouas (Groupama-FDJ)|
|6||Amaro Antunes (CCC)|
|7||Fausto Masnada (Androni Giocattoli-Sidermec)|
|8||Pieter Serry (Deceuninck-Quick-Step)|
|9||Andrey Amador (Movistar)|
|10||Sam Oomen (Team Sunweb)|
|11||Pello Bilbao (Astana)|
|12||Primoz Roglic (Jumbo-Visma)|
|13||Davide Formolo (Bora-hansgrohe)|
|14||Tony Gallopin (AG2R La Mondiale)|
|15||Simon Yates (Mitchelton-Scott)|
|16||Vincenzo Nibali (Bahrain-Merida)|
|17||Miguel Angel Lopez (Astana)|
|18||Rafal Majka (Bora-hansgrohe)|
|19||Mattia Cattaneo (Androni Giocattoli-Sidermec)|
|20||Bauke Mollema (Trek-Segafredo)|