After claiming a stage win during the Giro's opening week, Movistar Team's Ecuadorian star Richard Carapaz claimed 14th and moved into the maglia rosa of race leader. The Ecuadorian launched a perfectly timed attack with 3km to go on the Colle San Carlo, the hardest of the day's classified climbs, topping out 35 seconds ahead of the favourites group. Although Carapaz was almost pegged back on the descent, a display of power on the rolling roads and a lack of cooperation saw him reach the finish with a 1'32" over Simon Yates (Mitchelton Scott) and crucially, enough of an advantage over Primoz Roglic (Team Jumbo-Visma) to take the overall lead.
Carapaz further extended his lead over Roglic on Sunday as the Slovenian first suffered a crash and then a badly timed mechanical that saw him relinquish an additional 40". Today's rest day is followed by another brutal days in the mountains that will see the peloton tackle the Mortirolo to kick off the final week of racing.
We knew it’d be a difficult day and, most importantly, a tense finish. We felt quite alright when it comes to legs, both my team-mates and myself. Nibali was the one with a stronger will to attack today, driving the pace late into that final climb and also descending quite fast. He really helped splitting the field and we eventually gained some seconds as a result. In my case, I just tried to follow his wheel into the downhill, yet trying not to risk too much to avoid any crashes. After the descent, I was able to bridge back to his wheel, and we were able to gain those seconds against Roglic, which is always good.
Mavi García and Eider Merino both finished in the top ten of Emakumeen Bira, one of the most mountainous stage races in this year’s Women’s World Tour, helping Movistar Team Women claim the team classification in the Basque race. Sheyla Gutiérrez and Malgorzata Jasinska tried their hand on the final stage before being swept up by an elite selection that included stage and overall winner Elisa Longo Borghini (Trek Segafredo).
Gutiérrez held on for fourth spot on the day, with García and Merino securing their fourth and 9th places on GC.
Swissever GP Cham-Hagendorn
Bigla’s returned to Swiss roads after racing at Emakumeen Bira with Julie Leth picking up a win in the Hagendorn after 112km of challenging racing on a mainly flat, but narrow and technical circuit which featured one climb. Lizzy Banks followed Leth across the line to claim a 1-2 for the team.
It was a fast race with many attacks. We always tried to be up there at the front, and counter the important attacks. My teammates rode fantastically the whole day to make sure that we had riders in important moves. It was very hectic and in the end I managed to bridge into a front group with some other riders and then we went for the sprint. I wanted to be sure that if it came down to a sprint, that I would get a good result, because my teammates worked so hard today. I’m also so happy that Lizzy Banks finished second. It was really a team effort today.