Bahrain Merida Pro Cycling Team | Pozzovivo 6th at the summit finish
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Pozzovivo 6th at the summit finish

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Giro d’Italia 101 – Amore Infinito 

Praia a Mare, May 12th– Stage 8 ; Praia a Mare – Montevergine di Mercogliano –209 km

This very long stage with with local rainshowers and total elevation of 2.600m initially winds its way along trunk and fast-flow roads, with some tunnels along the way. The course straightens and levels out past Agropoli, following the Tyrrhenian coast all the way to Salerno. The last 55km, the route where climbs started all the way to the outskirts of Avellino. The road was narrow and worn out at points along the coast, and urban areas are dotted with roundabouts, traffic islands and speed bumps. The final climb leading to Montevergine di Mercogliano began just after Torrette di Mercogliano.

Team BAHRAIN MERIDA strategy has not been awarderd with a top five result today, but there can be any regrets. As planned, Matej Mohorič decided to go into an early breakaway with 6 more riders and held the gap of about 5 minutes from the bunch. Their advantage came down only with 15 km to go, on the final climb leading to Montevergine di Mercogliano, where the white jersey Richard Carapaz surprised the rivals, attacking from the peloton to bridge the gap to Bouwman, the last survivor of the break of the day. That was the winning move with the Ecuadorian taking a solo win under a heavy rain.

“Today’s team strategy was to go in the breakaway, because we though that they might leave it to go to the finish and so fight for the stage win” explains  Matej Mohorič,.TBM Slovenian rider “Unfortunately Mitchelton-Scott decided to control the race and we weren’t able to finish it off, but we will try again in the next days”.

Behind the winner Carapaz there has been a battle for bonus points. Formolo sprinted to second place, with Pinot third and Domenico Pozzovivo 6th. Then due to bonus seconds gained by the Frenchman, Team BAHRAIN MERIDA captain is now 5th in the overall. But tomorrow there will be immediately the chance for revenge.

Domenico Pozzovivo;The final climb was not hard. We had Mohoric in the breakaway and we believed he could do it. Then in the final I didn’t want to take any risk. The road was slippery and I try to accelerate after the final dangerous bend with 300 meters to go. I had good feelings from my legs today too, so I’m confident ahead of tomorrow’s stage. Let’s hope the weather will be better and I hope that I can attack on the ascent to Gran Sasso”.

(All pictures attached can be used for editorial and non-commercial use) – © Team Bahrain-Merida / @BettiniPhoto)