Aussie team Mitchelton-Scott scored a historical 1-2 on top of Mount Etna with Esteban Chaves enjoying a stage victory and team mate Simon Yates taking the leader’s jersey from Rohan Dennis in Sicily last night.
Grinning from ear to ear, stage winner Chaves – who’s now third overall behind Tom Dumoulin and Simon Yates – said although it had been a fantastic day the team have to keep their feet on the ground.
“A lot of things can still happen in the Giro with many more climbs ahead but we have something to enjoy now,” he said.
“I’ve worked very well in Colombia to prepare for the Giro. With a lot of work and a lot of love, it’s not impossible to win great races. I’ve been a bit lucky to make the breakaway with only one effort, but it’s beautiful to win here today.”
New race leader Simon Yates said he’d arrived at the Giro with the intention of winning and has been trying from the start to take the Jersey.
“Today I finally realised my goal,” he said. “I want to win this Giro, of course. From the beginning I said that I believe we have the strongest team and I still think so. It’s not just the climbers but the guys for the flat, too – real powerful guys.
“I think we can do a really good job in defending the jersey,” Yates continued. “Of course it will be difficult – there are many hard stages – but I’ve confidence in the guys around me. I have the confidence to be the captain until Rome. We came here as a team and I’ll try to win.”
Stage 6 Result
1 – Esteban Chaves (Mitchelton – Scott) – 169km in 4h16’11”, average speed 39.581km/h
2 – Simon Yates (Mitchelton – Scott) s.t.
3 – Thibaut Pinot (Groupama – FDJ) a 26″
General Classification After Stage 6
1 – Simon Yates (Mitchelton – Scott)
2 – Tom Dumoulin (Team Sunweb) at 16″
3 – Esteban Chaves (Mitchelton – Scott) at 26″
•It’s the second stage victory for Esteban Chaves at the Giro d’Italia after stage 14 to Corvara Alta Badia in 2016. He scores the 27th stage win of all time for Colombian riders. From the day he became the first-ever Colombian winner of a Monument with victory at the 2016 Il Lombardia, Chaves’ only victories were stage 3 and GC of the Herald Sun Tour in Australia in February this year.
•It’s the first-ever podium for Simon Yates at the Giro d’Italia. He’s the fourth British rider to take the Maglia Rosa after Mark Cavendish (in 2009, 2011 and 2013), Bradley Wiggins (in 2010) and David Millar (in 2011). He’s the first British leader after an uphill finish. British riders have recorded a total of seven days in the lead of the Giro d’Italia so far.
•It’s the fifth stage podium for Thibaut Pinot. Four of them have been conquered in mountain stages: winner of stage 20 to Asiago; second in stage 9 to the Blockhaus; and third positions in stage 15 to Bergamo and stage 18 to Ortisei last year. It’s his second Giro d’Italia.
•Maglia Rosa(pink), general classification leader, sponsored by Enel – Simon Yates (Mitchelton – Scott)
•Maglia Ciclamino(cyclamen), sprinter classification leader, sponsored by Segafredo – Elia Viviani (Quick-Step Floors)
•Maglia Azzurra (blue), King of the Mountains classification leader, sponsored by Banca Mediolanum – Esteban Chaves (Mitchelton – Scott)
•Maglia Bianca (white), young rider general classification leader, sponsored by Eurospin – Richard Carapaz (Movistar Team).