May 8, 2016 – Germany sprint ace Marcel Kittel pulled off an impressive double coup on Sunday by winning his second stage of the 99th Giro d’Italia to claim the race leader’s pink jersey. Kittel claimed his first win of this year’s edition with a dominant sprint finish on Saturday in Nijmegen, the Netherlands.

AFP/Yuzuru Sunada

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On the third and final stage to be held in the country on Sunday, the Etixx-Quickstep rider again proved unstoppable in a final dash to the finish line of the 190km race from Nijmegen, which saw the peloton chase down the last remnants of an early breakaway just 1km from the line.

Team Sky fast man Elia Viviani finished a distant second, with fellow Italian Giacomo Nizzolo completing the podium. Thanks to bonus seconds on offer at the finish, Kittel has taken the race lead from Giant-Alpecin rider Tom Dumoulin. Kittel now heads Dumoulin by nine seconds, with Movistar rider Andrey Amador in third at 15 behind. “I’m super happy with this victory, which is my fourth stage win at the Giro, and I’ve also got leader’s jersey as well,” said Kittel.

“I’m very happy to be able to say that I’ve worn the yellow jersey at the Tour de France and now the pink jersey at the Giro d’Italia, which is something quite unique.” Kittel admitted hopes of a second successive stage win were kept in check by the windy conditions, and a stubborn breakaway that saw Johann Van Zyl solo away on his own with 12 km to race.

The South African’s move forced Etixx to use precious energy chasing, but Kittel’s team completed the job with aplomb and delivered him to the home straight ready and willing to put the cherry on the cake.

“It was a super tough day, with lots of wind, which made it difficult to stay in position,” added Kittel. “The breakaway also got a big gap. But the boys did an amazing job of keeping me out of trouble and then getting Matteo Trentin, Fabio Sabatini and me into position for the sprint.

“Matteo and Fabio also did an amazing job, and that made it easier for me.”

After a rest day on Monday, the race resumes on Tuesday’s 200km fourth stage from Catanzaro to Praia a Mare in the south of Italy. The race finishes in Turin on May 29.

 

Final kilometers of Stage 3
http://youtu.be/F1uJ8P1h-nI

Results Stage 3:
1. Marcel Kittel (Ger) Etixx – Quick-Step 4:23:45
2. Elia Viviani (Ita) Team Sky
3. Giacomo Nizzolo (Ita) Trek-Segafredo
4. André Greipel (Ger) Lotto Soudal
5. Alexander Porsev (Rus) Team Katusha
6. Kristian Sbaragli (Ita) Dimension Data
7. Moreno Hofland (Ned) Team LottoNl-Jumbo
8. Arnaud Demare (Fra) FDJ
9. Rick Zabel (Ger) BMC Racing Team
10. Matej Mohoric (Slo) Lampre – Merida

General Classification:
1. Marcel Kittel (Ger) Etixx – Quick-Step 9:13:10
2. Tom Dumoulin (Ned) Team Giant-Alpecin 0:00:09
3. Andrey Amador (CRc) Movistar Team 0:00:15
4. Tobias Ludvigsson (Swe) Team Giant-Alpecin 0:00:17
5. Moreno Moser (Ita) Cannondale Pro Cycling 0:00:21
6. Bob Jungels (Lux) Etixx – Quick-Step 0:00:22
7. Matthias Brandle (Aut) IAM Cycling 0:00:23
8. Roger Kluge (Ger) IAM Cycling 0:00:25
9. Chad Haga (USA) Team Giant-Alpecin
10. Georg Preidler (Aut) Team Giant-Alpecin 0:00:26