Giro 2018 Stage 4: Wellens wins steep uphill sprint, Dennis still leader

The 4th stage of the Giro d'Italia is a hilly race with a trying finale. The last 500 metres to the line are averaging a whooping 10.8%. Tim Wellens sprints to the win ahead of Michael Woods and Enrico Battaglin, while Rohan Dennis retains in the lead. Simon Yates puts 4 seconds into most GC-riders and even 23 seconds into Chris Froome. (Slideshow route/profile)

Results 4th stage 2018 Giro d’Italia

1. Tim Wellens (bel)
2. Michael Woods (can) s.t.
3. Enrico Battaglin (ita) s.t.
4. Simon Yates (gbr) s.t.
5. Davide Formolo (ita) s.t.
6. Roman Kreuziger (cze) + 0.04
7. Patrick Konrad (aut) s.t.
8. Luis León Sánchez (spa) s.t.
9. Domenico Pozzovivo (ita) s.t.
10. Esteban Chaves (col) s.t.

11. Tom Dumoulin (nld) s.t.
12. Rohan Dennis (aus) s.t.
13. Thibaut Pinot (fra) s.t.
14. George Bennett (nzl) + 0.10
17. Louis Meintjes (rsa) s.t.
18. Fabio Aru (ita) s.t.
23. Wout Poels (nld) s.t.
25. Sam Oomen (nld) + 0.21
26. Sergio Henao (col) s.t.
29. Miguel Ángel López (col) s.t.
30. Chris Froome (gbr) s.t.
115. David de la Cruz (spa) + 6.44

GC after the 4th stage
1. Rohan Dennis (aus)
2. Tom Dumoulin (nld) + 0.01
3. Simon Yates (gbr) + 0.17
4. Tim Wellens (bel) + 0.19
5. Pello Bilbao (spa) + 0.25
6. Maximilian Schachmann (ger) + 0.28
7. Domenico Pozzovivo (ita) s.t.
8. Thibaut Pinot (fra) + 0.34
9. Patrick Konrad (aut) + 0.35
10. Carlos Betancur (col) s.t.

14. Esteban Chaves (col) + 0.47
18. Michael Woods (can) + 0.53
20. Chris Froome (gbr) + 0.55
21. George Bennett (nzl) + 0.56
24. Fabio Aru (ita) + 0.57
25. Sam Oomen (nld) + 1.00
26. Sergio Henao (col) + 1.03
30. Miguel Ángel López (col) + 1.14
31. Louis Meintjes (rsa) + 1.15
40. Wout Poels (nld) + 1.37

Race report
Attacks are flying from the start, but it takes 20 kms for a breakaway to stick. KOM-leader Enrico Barbin, Quentin Jauregui, Marco Frapporti, Maxim Belkov and Jacopa Mosca race to a lead of 4 minutes.

UAE Emirates ups the pace in the peloton at km 96 and the gap falls below 1 minute. The peloton splits, but after almost 10 kms of hectic racing it’s back to normal. The lead of the five bounces back to more than 2 minutes.

Barbin cements his lead in the mountain classification on the two KOM-climbs of the day.

Frapporti, Belkov and Mosca are the last leaders to be reeled in on the climb to San Bartolomeo with 13 kms to go. Zardini and Conti strike a little later before Conti heads out alone. He puts 25 seconds into the main group, but it goes down on the rolling section leading onto the steep last kilometre. With 3.3 kms left the Italian is caught.

Tim Wellens and four more riders reach the foot of the final haul up with a slight advantage. They are brought back within the double digits ramps of the final 500 metres leading up to the line, but the Belgian still has some juice left in the legs. He overhauls Enrico Battaglin in the last 200 metres to sprint to the win ahead of Michael Woods. Battaglin, Simon yates and Davide Formolo finish in the same time, 4 seconds ahead of leader Rohan Dennis and most other GC riders. The loser of the day is Chris Froome, who comes in 21 seconds down on the race winner.

Tomorrow brings another trying and hilly stage on Sicily.

Read also: route 4th stage 2018 Giro d’Italia.

Giro d’Italia 2018 stage 4: Route maps, height profiles, and more

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Tim Wellens

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