Sam Bennett again denied stage win as he finishes 3rd on stage 7 of the Giro d’Italia

Updated: May 15, 2017
Sam Bennett (2)

The BORA – hansgrohe team of Ireland’s Sam Bennett achieved its fifth podium result at this year’s Giro d’Italia when the Carrick on Suir man finished third on stage seven of the Grand Tour event.

The 224 kilometre stage began in Castrovillari and headed for a first-time stage finish at Alberobello. The mainly flat route, which suited the sprinters, saw the last 40 kilometres undulating. The final kilometres had to be undertaken carefully as after a short climb the last 700 metres went downhill before the sprint to the finish.

The race started, like the few previous days, with an early breakaway. Two riders went clear and built up a gap of more than 3 minutes. BORA – hansgrohe stayed in the peloton working for Sam Bennett, who had finished 3rd on stage 5, two days previously.

The breakaway was left out in front until 20km remaining in the stage when the sprinter teams started to form for their leaders and reduce the gap steadily.

When the breakaway was caught, it was Sam Bennett’s BORA – hansgrohe team that took control of the pace at the front of the peloton. In the last metres to the finishing line, Bennett was on the wheel of Rudi Selig with eventual stage winner, Caleb Ewan (Orica-Scott), on the left side. The Irishman found Quick-Step Floor’s Fernando Gaviria on his wheel as they headed for the line. All three riders crossed the finishing line with little to separate them. After a photo finish Ewan was declared the winner, with Gaviria second, and Sam Bennett taking third place.

In the first 7 stages of this the 100th Giro d’Italia, Bennett’s BORA – hansgrohe team has had five podium results, with one win, a second place and three third places.

Despite being narrowly denied a stage win, Bennett looked at the positives following his second 3rd place finish this week:

“It was a hectic and really a tricky final. I really don’t know what happened but the boys did a great job and I want to thank them. We are a pretty young group here but we work so well together and today it was really close to the win.”

The team’s Directeur Sportif, Jens Zemke, summed up his squad’s opening week at the Grand Tour, stating:

“After this lead-out the boys would have deserved this victory, they did a great job today. The Giro is running pretty well, with 5 podium results in 7 stages we are showing that the team has strength and depth. Sam was only beaten by some centimetres”

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