Diego Ulissi won the thirteenth stage in the Giro d’Italia on Friday. The 31-year-old Italian outpaced João Almeida (second) and Patrick Konrad (third) in a sprint. Wilco Kelderman finished in the same group and therefore remains second in the general classification.
In a stage of almost 200 kilometers, Ulissi was the best sprinter in a group of about twenty riders, who remained in the front after two climbs of the fourth category. The most important classification riders were also in the same group.
Almeida took six bonus seconds with his second place, including Kelderman, who finished at the back of the same group. The 22-year-old Portuguese now has 40 seconds ahead of the Dutchman of Sunweb, who is nine seconds ahead of number three Pello Bilbao.
Behind the group with the stage winner, Peter Sagan just failed to come back. The Slovak, who won a stage earlier this week, had the leading group in sight until the finish, but could not compete for the day victory.
The Giro continues on Saturday with a time trial of 34 kilometers. The riders will have to choose a hilly course with a steep climb in the beginning.
Classification riders remain at the front
In the largely flat stage, where there was only some climbing at the end, seven riders rode ahead for a long time. The Frenchman Geoffrey Bouchard and Alessandro Tonelli from Italy remained the longest of that group, but they were also caught on the second and last climb – a colletje of the fourth category.
Although the hills did not seem tough on paper, several riders had to release at the front. At the top of the second climb, only the classification riders were left, with Almeida including Kelderman and his teammate Sam Oomen.
Sagan made another attempt to close the gap, but he did not get further than 20 seconds from the leading group. Behind it, four-time stage winner Arnaud Démare rode together with other released sprinters.
The battle for the day victory therefore resulted in a sprint between the best sprinters from the leading group. Konrad and Almeida were the closest to Ulissi, but they too could not keep the UAE Team Emirates rider from his eighth stage victory in a grand tour.
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