14th of May 2018 Author: Johnny Karp
Simon Yates has tightened his grip on the pink jersey at the Giro d'Italia with an impressive win on Sunday's mountainous stage nine. However, Yates only accelerated with 100 meters left before the finish line, so he was unable to distance title holder Tom Dumoulin by more than 12 seconds, who is third in the general classification. Chris Froome had yet another bad day in the mountains at this year's Tour of Italy, he was unable to sustain the pace of the leader's group and ended up losing a minute to Yates and the others.
Simon Yates, who has won his first ever stage at the Giro on Sunday, leads the general classification with an advantage of 32 seconds on team-mate Esteban Chaves and 38 seconds on last year's winner Tom Dumoulin. However, the Dutchman has the time trial on stage 16 to look forward to and in theory he should be able to gain at least a minute on Yates on that stage, so the Mitchelton-Scott rider has to gain some more time on his rivals in the mountains if he wants to win the race.
"That one was for the boys who've been riding on the front all day - they've had a couple of tough days, always riding on the front on some really long stages," said Yates."From the beginning of the stage today, we were always thinking that if we kept the break close enough then it might be possible for the stage. Once Astana showed some interest in the stage then I knew it was possible, but you never know deep into the final." About Froome, Team Sky sporting director Nicolas Portal said: "He was looking good the last couple of days but we have to stay optimistic. We have two more weeks coming up and hopefully we have some better days. Let's hope that we can quickly forget this stage - they will keep fighting, and they won't give up."
With two more weeks of racing left, here's how the outright general classification odds at Bet365 are looking:
Tom Dumoulin - 5/4
Simon Yates - 11/4
Thibaut Pinot - 5/1
Chris Froome - 9/1
Esteban Chaves - 12/1
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A couple of seasons back I thought Team Sky should really go and get the Yates brothers, even then they looked like a great British talents.
Simon looking really great at the Giro so far and if I have to bet I would of put a bet on him winning the tour instead of Dumoulin, especially when we conceder how strong of a climbing team Michelton-Scott are.
The only thing I'm regretting about is that he wont be at the tour de France alongside his brother because I think after that Giro all of the rest of the contenders would of be quite scared of him.
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