LONDON: Italy's Alberto Bettiol stormed to a maiden victory on Thursday (May 27) with an impressive attack on stage 18 of the Giro d'Italia, a 231-kilometre ride from Rovereto to Stradella.
EF Education–Nippo's Bettiol and Remi Cavagna (Deceuninck-Quick-Step) fought for the win on the longest stage of the race before Bettiol caught up on the final ascent and overtook him as Cavagna cracked.
Cavagna eventually finished ninth while Simone Consonni (Cofidis) finished second, beating Nicolas Roche (Team DSM) close to the finish line.
"I really wanted this one. I'd missed out on a couple of chances and so I needed this," Bettiol said after his team's first stage win this year.
"It's really difficult to get into the break in the third week but I know I can do well when my legs are better than my luck."
Cavagna was disappointed after failing to win the stage and admitted he may have broken away too soon.
"We wanted to take the last opportunity before the time trial. We tried, maybe it was a bit far out ... I was mentally feeling good," Cavagna said.
"I didn't know how much time I had so it's a little bit frustrating. It wasn't easy against everybody in that break today. There were too many good riders and teams, and a lot of teams with more than one rider which never makes it easy."