Esteban Chaves (Mitchelton-Scott) – stage winnner
It’s unbelievable. This is the best start for the Giro d’Italia. I think I knew we had to be up front – we had a very hard stage to Etna. I made the break with Jack (Haig), I want to say thank you for Jack, he pulled a lot in the breakaway. In the final I rode with Yates, I was first and he claimed the maglia rosa. How unbelievable is that? I think also I’m in the king of the mountains jersey – it’s like a dream. Now we go to the mainland – we’re super excited and will keep on dreaming.
Simon Yates (Mitchelton-Scott) – race leader
(Was it the plan?) No, not at all. The start was a little crazy there with a lot of attacks going. I don’t know how but Esteban was in the front there with a really big group. That meant we could sit back and I did the same final – I tried to be the best as possible. I didn’t really need to do anything so I could sit in the wheels and save some energy, because of course we had Esteban in the lead. In the end, it worked out perfectly.
I felt really good – I’m not really sure (how it happened) – I looked across the road and everybody was looking at each other and there was a little bit of a gap. I took a chance and I got across. It’s worked out really good.
(How did you decide who would win?) I said to him as soon as I caught him that he could take the stage because if I had enough time then I would take the jersey. He’d been out on the road all day so I think he deserved it.
Tom Dumoulin (Sunweb) – 8th on stage, 2nd overall
“There were a lot of attacks today but only Yates had the legs to really pull on. I decided to spice things up a little bit and see how everyone was doing. I felt like I had something left, not a lot but some, and I wanted to know if I was the only one feeling like that.
“I wasn’t super today but I was there so it was alright. It was good that with not the best legs I could still hang on. I still have a good position int he GC but today I wasn’t the best. It was a difficult final climb, really long and challenging. It’s difficult to draw conclusions based on today.”
Domenico Pozzovivo (Bahrain-Merida)
Jack Haig (Mitchelton-Scott)
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