Unstoppable Gaviria claims fourth Giro win

Tom Dumoulin

Colombian Fernando Gaviria claimed a hat- trick of victories in this year's Giro d'Italia when he won the 229-km 12th stage on Thursday.

The Quick-Step rider came from nowhere at the end of the 167km stage to blast through a gap and cross the line first with BORA rider Bennett settling for second place.

The victory was the 22-year-old Colombian's fourth of the race, further underlining his dominance.

Facing a challenging climb up Mount Baldy, the two cyclists separated themselves in the final stretch where Talansky moved in front on the final left-hand corner to earn the win for his Cannondale Drapac team.

Dumoulin negotiated a comfortable stage that included just two categorised ascents and still holds a lead of two minutes and 23 seconds over Quintana (Movistar) after crossing the line six seconds after Gaviria‏.

"I would need to win three monuments to help me make up for the Olympics", Gaviria said, referring to cycling's five "monument" one-day classics.

Dumoulin, meanwhile, avoided mishaps as he looks ahead to Saturday's stage and beyond.

Fraile went clear with Team Sky's Mikel Landa, with the British squad forced into being creative after Sunday's crash appeared to have knocked both Landa and Geraint Thomas completely out of contention.

"Looking ahead to tomorrow, things will be pretty steady during the day and then it will be full gas onto the last climb". Sam Bennett (IRL/BOR) same time, 3. Jasper Stuyven (Trek Segafredo) 167 3. Rudiger Selig (GER/BOR) s.t., 7.

With Aussie youngster Ewan and German national champion Andre Greipel (Lotto Soudal) isolated, and Gaviria hugely distanced, it looked like Bennett's long wait for a win would come to an end. "Bauke Mollema (Netherlands / Trek) +2:38" 4. South African Johann Van Zyl (Dimension Data), Slovenian Matej Mohoric (UEA Team Emirates), Russia's Pavel Brutt (Gazprom-Rusvelo) and Italy's Vincenzo Albanese (Bardiani-CSF) quickly established a lead of over two minutes before Van Zyl had a change of heart and sat up for the peloton. "Thibaut Pinot (France / FDJ) +2:40" 5.

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