The Giro di Sicilia (2.1) finished today on Mount Etna and the stage was won by Frenchman Guillaume Martin (Wanty Gobert Cycling Team).
The 119-kilometre stage started in Giardini Naxos with Brandon McNulty (Rally UHC Cycling) going into the stage with a 59-second advantage over Martin’s Wanty – Gobert team-mate Odd Christian Eiking with 13 other riders, including Martin, just over a minute behind so it would be a big challenge for McNulty to hang on to his lead..
The race exploded from the bottom of the Etna and the peloton was reduced to around 25 riders when Eiking attacked with 17 kilometres to go.
The Danish rider led for nearly 10 kilometres before Dayer Quintana (Neri Sottoli – Selle Italia – KTM) attacked. McNulty stayed in control though. Guillaume Martin then attacked with 2 kilometres to go to take the team’s first win this season with McNulty finishing in fourth to take the overall win, as Martin moved up to 2nd in the GC.
Guillaume Martin: “It was not an easy win. Yesterday evening I hesitated to start today. Stage 3 was really difficult with the rain and I got a bit cold. I also had pain at my knee. This is not new as I suffer from my knee for almost 3 weeks but the cold did not help to recover. This morning, I was quite pessimistic but I wanted to battle for the win.”
“I knew I would not be able to take the final win so I chose for the stage win. McNulty was really strong, so I am very happy with the 2nd position in the GC and the stage win in Sicily. I really enjoyed the region. Last year, I was already on altitude training camp on the Etna, but this time I could enjoy the tifosi. Now, I will take some rest. My next race will be Paris-Camembert.”