Chaves edges new Giro leader Yates on Stage 6

Chaves edges new Giro leader Yates on Stage 6

Chaves edges new Giro leader Yates on Stage 6

Irishman Sam Bennett powered to victory in the seventh stage of the Giro d'Italia on Friday, beating favourite Elia Viviani in a sprint finish at Praia a Mare.

Thursday's sixth stage went better, though, and he improved his position to 26th - but still four minutes and 34 seconds behind the new leader, Simon Yates of the Mitchelton-Scott team.

Ireland's Sam Bennett celebrates winning stage seven at the Giro d'Italia - his first ever stage win in a grand tour.

Yates now leads Tom Dumoulin by 16s in the race for the pink jersey, while Chaves' victory lifts him up into third place.

Dennis' defeat was far from decisive, however, as the rider bearing the maglia rosa since Tel Aviv in Israel on Stage 2 crossed the line a relatively minor 1:04 behind stage victor Esteban Chaves (Mitchelton-Scott).

On stages two and three of this year's race in Israel things looked to be going in a similar direction as he finished third on both days, each time denied by Quick-Step's Elia Viviani. "I just had to get that wheel, and have a bit of patience as well".

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Chavez made a major jump in the general classification and is only 25 second behind Yates, who took the lead in the general classification.

"I'm really happy. We tried so hard in other sprints but never got the timing right". Interestingly, Roche took the Maglia Rosa for good in 1987 at Sappada where the Giro returns this year for the first time, on May 20, for the 15th stage.

"They were really far back and I thought there was no way we'd come back because there was the chicane still to come and I thought for sure it would be one line so even if we did get back, would I still have the power still to go?"

Dennis said that BMC had performed well on Stage 6, despite the intense pressure of having a huge break with some key GC challengers up the road after just 50km.

Team Sky's Chris Froome, aiming to win a third successive grand tour, remains eighth, 70 seconds behind his race-leading compatriot.

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