Killer blow for Froome’s Giro bid as Yates ex­tends lead

The Borneo Post - - SPORT -

OSIMO, Italy: Chris Froome’s Giro d’Italia hopes took a killer blow on Wed­nes­day as the Bri­ton lost even more time in the 11th stage won by over­all leader Si­mon Yates.

The 25-year- old Yates ex­tended his ad­van­tage as Froome, 32, lost more time and is now nearly three min­utes be­hind his com­pa­triot.

“I cer­tainly haven’t given up hope,” in­sisted Froome.

“I’m go­ing to keep plugging away, I’m mo­ti­vated, the team’s mo­ti­vated and we’re go­ing to do as much as we can.”

Yates at­tacked on the fi­nal climb with a kilo­me­tre to ride to claim his sec­ond stage win this year, fin­ish­ing two sec­onds ahead of de­fend­ing champion Tom Du­moulin.

The Mitchel­ton- Scott rider ex­tends his lead on Dutch­man Du­moulin by a fur­ther six sec­onds to 47sec.

“Tom ( Du­moulin) is the one who is wor­ry­ing me, he’s still too close,” said Yates who is also King of the Moun­tains.

“He was chas­ing me and he looked bet­ter than other days on steep fin­ishes. He’s get­ting bet­ter as the race goes on.

“The Giro has been in my head since last win­ter. It’s my ob­jec­tive this year.”

Froome again lost steam in the fi­nal climb with the four- time Tour de France win­ner fin­ish­ing in 42nd position, some 40 sec­onds be­hind Yates.

Italy’s Da­vide For­molo was third, a fur­ther three sec­onds be­hind, af­ter the 156km hilly route from the cen­tral city of As­sisi across to Osimo near the Adri­atic coast.

Team Sky rider Froome has strug­gled at key mo­ments since the start of the race – fall­ing twice – and is now over three min­utes off the lead.

He needs a mir­a­cle to re­vive his at­tempt to be­come the first rider to win three Grand Tours in a row since French­man Bernard Hin­ault in 1982/83.

He had been re­duced to a spec­ta­tor’s role in the bat­tle for the pink jersey which for now is a two-horse race be­tween Yates and Du­moulin.

“It was a tough day, it wasn’t as long as yes­ter­day, but it was an­other pretty brutal fin­ish,” said Froome.

“I’m not go­ing to lie, it took a whack out of me that crash be­fore the start in Jerusalem and in this game if you’re not at your ab­so­lute best there’s nowhere to hide. — AFP

— AFP photo

Christopher Froome fin­ishes the 11th stage be­tween As­sisi and Osimo dur­ing the 101st Giro d’Italia, Tour of Italy cy­cling race.

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