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Simon Yates extends lead with stage 11 victory
16 May 2018, 09:23 | Sandy Nunez
Mohoric wins day as Chaves fades
His team mate Esteban Chaves experiencing a "giorno senza" - "an empty day" - to see defending champion Tom Dumoulin of Team Sunweb move back into second place overall, 41 seconds down on the Lancashire rider, having got back onto the GC group after a late mechanical problem. "I need as many seconds as I can get so maybe I need to go for more bonus seconds". This usually happens in short stages only.
"I've got a hard relationship with Italy; it's love and hate". The high speed never stopped. "If I keep gaining here and there I'll be happy".
Chaves's time loss could work for Yates as the Colombian will now be exclusively a domestique for him.
Going into Tuesday's stage, they were in the enviable position of occupying the top two positions in the overall standings, meaning tactically they would be able to play two cards in the pink jersey race.
But once Chaves was distanced, the teams of overall hopefuls including four-time Tour de France victor Chris Froome, reigning champion Tom Dumoulin, local favourite Fabio Aru and French hope Thibaut Pinot, pushed the pace in the peloton to ensure the Colombian never regained contact.
It could be a fruitful basket, with Yates extending his lead to 41 seconds after taking bonus seconds at an intermediate sprint point, and he - and Bennett - almost made further gains in a tense descent near the end of the stage.
1 Matej Mohoric (Svn) Bahrain-Merida 6hr 4min 52sec; 2 Nico Denz (Ger) AG2R La Mondiale at same time; 3 Sam Bennett (Ire) Bora-Hansgrohe at 34sec; 4 Enrico Battaglin (It) LottoNL-Jumbo; 5 Davide Ballerini (It) Androni-Sidermec; 6 Mads Würtz Schmidt (Den) Katusha; 7 Francesco Gavazzi (It) Androni-Sidermec; 8 Jarlinson Pantano (Col) Trek-Segafredo; 9 Gianluca Brambilla (It) Trek-Segafredo; 10 José Gonçalves (Por) Katusha all at same time.
Slovenian rider Matej Mohoric edged Nico Denz in two-man sprint to win the stage while all of the other leaders finished in the main pack, 34 seconds behind.
"After that, I remained close to [team-mate] Domenico Pozzovivo until I asked him if I could ride behind Villela since I felt very good". I m not very good in a sprint from a slow speed so I launched and I increased my speed as much as I could.
Wednesday's stage 11 will be another lumpy one, covering 156km and three categorised climbs between Assisi and Osimo.
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