Yates wins stage nine to extend Giro lead as Froome trails

Sam Bennett wins 7th stage as Simon Yates maintains Giro d'Italia lead

Britain's Simon Yates, center, sprints to win the 9th stage of the Giro d'Italia cycling race from Pesco Sannita to Campo Imperatore, Italy, Sunday, May 13.

"Tomorrow will be a bit more hard", added Yates of Sunday's ninth stage which finishes at 2,135 metres altitude at Gran Sasso d'Italia with a gruelling 26.5km climb at Campo Imperatore, where Benito Mussolini was imprisoned in 1943.

The finish of the final stage of the first week of the race was located in the famous mount of the first category, the Gran Sasso d'italia with a length of nearly 30 kilometers.

A few days ago the team's video gave a unique look inside the team after Esteban Chaves had led home Simon Yates for a Mitchelton-Scott one-two atop Mount Etna with Yates moving into the pink jersey. "That one is for the boys who rode at the front all day", added Yates. "It's really nice. Since the beginning of the day we believed in the possibility of winning the stage as well as defending the Maglia Rosa".

Yates was part of a five-man group that escaped in the final kilometers of the summit finish and the Mitchelton-Scott cyclist attacked right at the end to edge out Thibaut Pinot.

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Team Sky's Froome is now two minutes and 27 seconds behind Yates and down to 11th place overall.

Defending champion Tom Dumoulin - who will hope to take time back in the stage-16 time trial - now trails the Briton by 38 seconds, while Froome dropped out of the top ten after a day to forget.

"I think so", he replied when asked if he could win.

"We were always thinking that if we kept the break close enough then it might be possible for the stage.' Yates" Colombian team-mate Esteban Chaves moved up to second overall, 32sec in arrears, with Dutchman Dumoulin in third.

Tomorrow the Giro-2018 second rest day, and on Tuesday the participants of the race will overcome the 239-km stage with three category nodes.

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