Giro leader Yates gains 3 seconds but his team struggles

Simon Yates has extended his lead at the Giro

Simon Yates has extended his lead at the Giro

Yates attacked with about 1.5 kilometers remaining of the 156-kilometer leg from Assisi to Osimo and the Mitchelton-Scott rider held off Dumoulin on the steep climb to the finish to claim his second victory of the race. He is 1min 04sec ahead of Thibaut Pinot in overall third.

Direct previous time trial comparisons are hard to come by. He's getting better as the race goes on, and that's not good news for me'.

"No, no, I'm going to keep fighting, it's good to get this racing in the legs".

"As for Tom behind me, I didn't actually know until we crested the climb a little bit towards the top because I was just going full gas and I don't like to look behind, if I did I wasn't paying attention to who it was".

"I was in a good position, the boys did a good job to get me up front, but Yates went, and I went after him, and I put myself in a bad spot and struggled to the line".

The Team Sky man dropped off the pace during the final ascent of the stage to finish 40 seconds behind Yates.

"We saw with Esteban Chaves how quickly things can change for the general classification riders, so we just have to keep plugging away and keep trying to do everything we can", Froome said.

"I'm not going to lie it took a whack out of me that crash before the start over in Jerusalem, I've had a lot of pain down my right-hand side".

Froome said he feels like his normal self, the one that dominated the last few editions of the Tour de France. "I'm motivated, the team's motivated and we're going to do as much as we can".

France's Thibaut Pinot would end eight seconds adrift of Yates on the stage, which took place in the hometown of the late Michele Scarponi, who was killed in a training ride previous year.

There were a number of early attacks but nothing stuck until Luis León Sánchez and Alessandro De Marchi took off.

Thursday's 214km ride will be over a flat route from Osimo to Imola, two days before a gruelling mountain stage with a summit finish on Monte Zoncolan.

Zdenek Stybar and Tim Wellens attacked and opened up a small gap late in the race but couldn't respond when Yates made his move. The race ends in Rome on 27 May.

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