Another long, but completely flat day was on the menu today and favoured the fast men in the peloton. Stage 12 took the peloton from yesterday’s finish in Osimo over 214 km to Imola. The route along the coast passed the city of Rimini and finished on the Imola race track. But before the stage winner could celebrate his victory, a tricky finale with a short category fourth climb awaited the riders.
The Team Tactics:
Today’s team tactic was completely clear: full support for the Irish sprinter Sam Bennett. The team wanted to assist him during the day and, like last time, bring him into a good position for the challenging final. The lead-out train consisted of Andreas Schillinger and Christoph Pfingsten.
Directly after the start, a group of five riders formed the breakaway of the day, and after some kilometres the gap increased to more than three minutes. Like in previous stages Sam Bennett’s teammates did a stellar job to protect their sprinter, the team spent the day in the main bunch. The breakaway was gone for most of the stage, Cesare Benedetti set the pace together with his teammates at the front of the peloton even as it started to rain with 40 km to go and the roads got slippery. The peloton caught the breakaway with 20 km to go and the race went on fire, many riders tried to attack, but all attempts failed. The race headed into the final on the Imola race circuit. BORA – hansgrohe’s Sam Bennett started his sprint early, but the Irish rider flew confidently to his second stage win at the 101st Giro d’Italia. The seventh podium place for BORA–hansgrohe after twelve stages.
- S. Bennett: 4:49:34
- D. van Poppel: +0:00
- N. Bonifazio: +0:00
From the Finish Line:
“The way it happened, that I had to go so early and I pulled it off – that’s a nice way to win. It gives me confidence. We still had two guys in front. I didn’t know how much energy they had left, but I didn’t want another stage getting away from me, so I decided to go early. I didn’t know if I could hold it or not. I think I caught some guys by surprise, so it worked to my advantage. The guys did an unbelievable job today, especially in the final kilometres. The victory wouldn’t have happened without them, today was a real team effort.” – Sam Bennett.
“What can we say after this incredible victory. The whole team did an amazing job today, stayed together and worked together. In the finale, Sam went out early but after his stage win he was confident and took the win with a gap over his opponents, just amazing. We are more than proud of this team.” Jens Zemke, sports director.