Monday, 21 May, 2018

Rohan Dennis takes the lead as Elia Viviani wins stage two

Elia Viviani Elia Viviani emerged from a bunch sprint to take his second ever stage win at the Giro d'Italia
Betsy Taylor | 07 May, 2018, 13:52

"You just have to be careful and take some good corners and be cautious when you have to be".

Froome s build-up to his attempt to become only the third man in history to hold all three Grand Tour titles at once - he won both the Tour de France and Vuelta a Espana a year ago - had already been compromised by a scandal over an adverse doping test reading in September.

Dennis had set the fastest time some two and a half hours earlier and had seen more than 130 riders subsequently fail to better his mark of 12min 04sec until Dumoulin snatched victory.

As I grabbed an omelette and some fruit, I had a quick chat with Irish national champion Ryan Mullen, who is riding his first Grand Tour here.

While the opening stages showed off the diverse landscapes' of Israel's north and southern regions, the Jerusalem section avoided any excursion into its eastern, Palestinian parts and passed by the iconic Jaffa Gate and landmarks such as Israel's Parliament and the Supreme Court.

The 120 million shekel (34 million dollars, 27 million euros) investment in the Israeli leg attracted thousands of tourists as spectators watched to see whether four-time Tour de France champion Chris Froome, victor of three Grand Tour titles in a row. Last year, he entered the final stage in Milan in fourth but surged to victory.


Rohan Dennis (pink) stayed inside the BMC bubble to finish Stage 3 safely.

"I won and so don't want to start a polemic".

"Rémi [Cavagna] took the responsibility on his shoulders and closed the breakaway, Styby [Zdenek Stybar] brought us to the front, then Florian [Sénéchal] took over with two kilometres to go before Michael [Mørkøv] and Saba [Fabio Sabatini] dropped me in the closing kilometre. The course was hard but absolutely ideal for me". "The win, everyone was expecting (it) but doing it is never easy", Viviani said, "I was really nervous this morning, I tried to overcome a bit this emotion but it's not easy". "And the day that we lose it, it will be all about getting to Rome".

"It s nice to have it today but it s hard to keep it for the whole three weeks, so we will see what we will do". "We are not planning on defending it whatever the cost".

Jerusalem's opening leg was named in honor of Gino Bartali, a three-time former Giro champion who in 2013 was posthumously bestowed Israel's highest honor given to non-Jews who risked their lives to save Jews during World War II.

With a rest day tomorrow, the race now moves to Italy in stage four on Tuesday, consisting of a 198km route from Catania to Caltagirone.

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