Giro d’Italia: Britain’s Alex Dowsett wins stage eight with Matthew Holmes in third

Alex Dowsett wins stage eight

Britain’s Alex Dowsett claimed a solo victory in the eighth stage of the Giro d’Italia with Matthew Holmes third.

The 32-year-old Israel Start-Up Nation rider was part of a six-man breakaway allowed to go free on the 200km run from Giovinazzo to Vieste.

There was no change in the general classification, Joao Almeida retaining his 43-second lead over Pello Bilbao.

Britain’s Simon Yates withdrew from the race before the start of the stage after testing positive for coronavirus.

Dowsett rode away inside the final 20km as he used his time-trialling skills to take victory by 75 seconds.

It was his second career Giro stage win, seven years after his success on the stage eight time trial of the 2013 edition, and a first Grand Tour victory for his young team.

Fellow Briton Holmes was beaten to second place by Salvatore Puccio, while the peloton eventually rolled home almost 14 minutes behind.

Four-time Tour de France winner Chris Froome will join Israel Start-Up Nation next year, but Dowsett’s own future is uncertain in the final months of his contract.

“It’s been such a tough year,” said Dowsett, who is due to become a father in the coming months.

“Just all the uncertainty and trying to work out how I’m going to get to next year and still be racing, still be doing what I love, and still being able to put food on the table for three of us rather than two come January.

“Hopefully this year will help secure something for next year.”

Stage eight result:

1. Alex Dowsett (GB/Israel Start-Up Nation) 4hrs 50mins 09secs

2. Salvatore Puccio (Ita/Ineos Grenadiers) +1min 15secs

3. Matthew Holmes (GB/Lotto-Soudal) same time

4. Joey Rosskopf (US/CCC Team)

5. Matthias Brandle (Aut/Israel Start-Up Nation) +2mins 10secs

6. Simone Ravanelli (Ita/Androni Giacattaoli – Sidermac) +2mins 13secs

7. Michael Matthews (Aus/Team Sunweb) +13mins 56secs

8. Fernando Gaviria (Col/UAE-Team Emirates) same time

9. Mikkel Bjerg (Den/UAE-Team Emirates)

10. Andrea Vendrame (Ita/AG2R-La Mondiale)

Selected others:

25. Ben Swift (GB/INEOS Grenadiers)

66. Tao Geoghegan Hart (GB/Ineos Grenadiers)

70. James Knox (GB/Deceuninck-Quick-Step)

General classification

1. Joao Almeida (Por/Deceuninck-Quick-Step) 29hrs 52mins 34secs

2. Pello Bilbao (Spa/Bahrain-McLaren) +43secs

3. Wilco Kelderman (Ned/Team Sunweb) +48secs

4. Harm Vanhoucke (Bel/Lotto-Soudal) +59secs

5. Vincenzo Nibali (Ita/Trek-Segafredo) +1min 01secs

6. Domenico Pozzovivo (Ita/NTT Pro Cycling Team) +1min 05secs

7. Jakob Fuglsang (Den/Astana Pro Team) +1min 19secs

8. Steven Kruijswijk (Ned/Jumbo-Visma) +1min 21secs

9. Patrick Konrad (Aut/Bora-Hansgrohe) +1min 26secs

10. Rafal Majka (Pol/Bora-Hansgrohe) +1min 32secs

Selected others:

19. Tao Geoghegan Hart (GB/Ineos Grenadiers) +3mins 18secs

20. James Knox (GB/Deceuninck-Quick-Step) +3mins 26secs

91. Matthew Holmes +42mins 48secs

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