Caleb Evan proved himself a rocket scientist again, winning his second stage of the Giro d’Italia in three days after another great sprint.
- Evan also won the Giro d’Italia in a chaotic fifth stage.
- He is only the fourth person ever to win stages of all three Grand Tours in a single calendar year.
- Nevertheless, the Hungarian player Attila Walter finished safely in the group, retaining the leader of the absolute rating, Maglia Rosa.
At the conclusion of the seventh leg of the 181 km from Notaresco to Termoli, Sydneider again demonstrated that he is the fastest man in the race on Friday, with a rush uphill to the finish line that caused his opponents to flounder.
Evan grabbed the long distance to the finish line from Colombian Fernando Gaviria and slipped the last 60 meters, winning a couple of bike lengths against badly beaten Davide Cimolai and Tim Merlier.
The victory also put Evan in first place in the points classification, while Attila Walter from Hungary successfully finished in the group, retaining the leader of the absolute rating, Maglia Rosa.
“Gaviria pushed me hard. If it was someone else, you would probably wait a bit, but you know that when he leaves, he has the strength and speed to hold him, so I had to act tactically.
“I didn’t want to accelerate too much at the start. I left a small gap, then when it was about 200 meters to the finish line, I had a small gap to bump into, and then I really accelerated. “
Indeed, it accelerated so quickly that there was not the slightest doubt that Ewen would make it to his fifth Giro win and bring the total number of Grand Tour wins to 11.
Nonetheless, the Australian was quick to welcome the work done by his team to place him in the ideal position to strike amid familiar onslaught and attempts to take a stand at the denouement.
“It’s all about the teamwork of my guys, who were from afar. I said in the last 10 km that we really need to be ahead so that we don’t have to pray for anything and we have a really good run.
“And they did a really good job – and the most important thing I told them was the start of the upswing. Because if I have free mileage and clean uphill mileage, I will save a lot of energy. …
So far, all is well for Ewen to make a history bet by becoming the fourth person ever to win stages on all three epic rounds in the same calendar year.
“I will be the first non-European to do this, and since cycling is a global sport, if I can make history because of this, I would like to leave some mark on cycling,” he said.
But while he leads the race on points, Ewen says he won’t be able to finish the Giro.
“I need to do my best to prepare for the tour [de France]… Unfortunately, the sprinters’ legs are not recovering the way other riders do, and if I finished the Giro now, I would be dying within the next few months. “