Simon Yates wins the time trial, Van der Poel resists as Giro leader

The British cyclist Simon Yates, one of the theoretical candidates for the title in this edition of the Giro d’Italia, won this Saturday in the second stage, a time trial in the streets of Budapest, ahead of the Dutchman Mathieu Van der Poel, who continues as overall leader.

Van der Poel, winner of the first stage on Friday, was 14 seconds ahead of Simon Yates before the time trial, in which he was three seconds behind the Briton and in which he was even better than a specialist in this type of event, his compatriot Tom Dumoulin, who was third of the day after the 9.2-kilometre timed route, which ran through several of the most emblematic and tourist places in the capital of Hungary.

Van der Poel had said on Friday that he wanted to keep his ‘pink jersey’ despite the fact that it did not seem easy and he was even close to winning the time trial. The three seconds that separated him from victory are those that he lost on the flat part of the track, before the final ascent of the Buda hill (1.3 km at an average gradient of 4.9%).

In last year’s Tour de France, Van der Poel also led the Laval time trial, then longest and in the fifth stage, and also came out of it with the jersey of first overall.

For Simon Yates, this Saturday’s victory is the fifth he has achieved in a Giro. His success was a surprise, since it was expected that the victory could go to Tom Dumoulin or the Portuguese Joao Almeida (11th finally, 18 seconds).

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Simon Yates, who will turn 30 on August 7, already showed in March at Paris-Nice that he can be strong in a time trial (5th), losing just 11 seconds to the world runner-up in the specialty, the Belgian Wout Van Aert.

He also won the Paris-Nice time trial in 2019.

Among the favourites, the Colombian Miguel Ángel López and the Spanish Mikel Landa were the most affected of the day. The first was 59th, at 42 seconds, and the second 30th, at 33 seconds.

Ecuadorian Richard Carapaz, champion of the Giro d’Italia in 2019 and main favorite theoretician to reach the last stage of Verona dressed in pink, was nineteenth this Saturday, 28 seconds behind.


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