Elia Viviani (Quick-Step Floors) today became the first Italian rider in five years to take three stages at the Giro d’Italia when he won the 13th stage at Nervesa della Battaglia.
“This is the nicest and the most emotional victory of the three I got. We rode over some roads I knew from when I started my career and which brought back the memories, so this makes today’s win even more special”, said Viviani afterwards.
The 180-kilometre flat stage ran from Ferrara to Nervesa della Battaglia was identified as one for the sprinters and the riders faced a sunny start to the day before the clouds came over for the final.
A break of five riders made it away within the first 15 kilometres of racing and they held off the peloton until the last 6 kilometres. The sprint teams controlled the final kilometres of racing, making sure that their sprinters maintained position going into the final stretch.
The Quick-Step Floors team helped to keep Viviani in a good position in the closing kilometres and they dropped the Italian on the wheel of Sacha Modolo (EF Education First). Viviani struck out with 200 metres to go and left everyone else trailing, winning by more than a bike length over Sam Bennett (Bora-hansgrohe) and Danny van Poppel (LottoNL-Jumbo). As a result, Viviani took his season haul to nine victories and extended his lead in the cyclamino jersey standings to 40 points.
“It’s really amazing! The past two days were difficult, but this morning we were 100% focused and motivated on getting the win, so we put two guys at the front to set the tempo behind the breakaway and did a great job also in the final, where the guys made sure of bringing me in the best position”, said Viviani.
“Before the start of the race, I was asked what were my goals and I said that it would be a dream to take three wins and the maglia ciclamino. Now, with three stages in the bag and the lead in the points classification, everything is going as planned.”
Viviani was asked what are his chances of carrying the maglia ciclamino over the mountains that will make for a punishing third week: “The morale is high and the legs are good, so hopefully nothing will change over the next stages. I know that I have a strong team around and the guys will help me get over the climbs, so I’m confident in my chances.”