GIRO’18 Stage 4: All’s Wellens In Sicily!

Race Report: The Belgian rider Tim Wellens (Lotto FixAll) won Stage 4 of the 101st Giro d’Italia – 202 kilometers from Catania to Caltagirone. Recent PEZ interviewee Michael Woods (EF Education First-Drapac p/b Cannondale) and Enrico Battaglin (Lotto NL-Jumbo) finished second and third, respectively. Rohan Dennis (BMC) remains the race General Classification leader, wearing the Maglia Rosa.

A strong showing from Lotto FixAll’s Tim Wellens

The route has an undulating profile (with several ascents, including two categorized climbs), and features a continuous series of bends throughout the stage course. Roads are generally wide, and the surface is worn out at points. Cobblestones may be present in urban areas.

Stage 4

Final kilometers
The final 5 kilometers run entirely within the city. There is a short (well-lit) tunnel with 5km to go, while from 3km to 2km to go, the route crosses the old town centre on a narrowed roadway. The last kilometer runs entirely uphill with gradients reaching 13%. The home stretch is 300m long, on 7.5m-wide asphalt road.

Rohan Dennis had a hard day ahead

The fans were out for the start in Catania

Still snow on Etna

Not many flat roads in Sicilia

All pink for Rohan Dennis

In an eventful run-in and uphill finish to Caltagirone, Tim Wellens took his second Giro d’Italia stage victory two years after his solo move to Roccarasso. Rohan Dennis retained the Maglia Rosa as his biggest threat in the group of leaders, Simon Yates (Mitchelton-Scott), didn’t gain more than 4 seconds on the Australian and is now in 3rd place. Dennis finished next to Tom Dumoulin (Sunweb) and still hold his lead on the 2017 Giro winner by 1 second.

The leading group

The chasers at 4 seconds

The Chris Froome group at 21 seconds

Tim Wellens at the head of the leading group: Wellens, Michael Woods, Enrico Battaglin, Simon Yates and Davide Formolo

Stage 4 winner, Tim Wellens (Lotto FixAll): “I was lucky enough to have very strong teammates. So I started with a bit of an advantage at the beginning of the climb. I didn’t have to go full-on from the bottom; I could wait for the last 200 meters. I’m very happy with winning as early as on stage 4 so the rest of the Giro will just be a bonus, whatever comes next. I’ll ride stress free now.”

A tough day, but still in pink

Giro leader, Rohan Dennis (BMC): “It’s been hectic with a lot of corners and a lot of public in the finale. It was a question of staying out of trouble from the last ten kilometers until the bottom of the last climb. It’s pretty common that I’ve lost the leader’s jersey after one day in other Grand Tours. To retain the Maglia Rosa today is big for me.”

Not a good day for Chris Froome – 21 seconds down on Wellens

Giro d’Italia Stage 4 Result:
1. Tim Wellens (Bel) Lotto FixAll in 5:17:34
2. Michael Woods (Can) EF Education First-Drapac p/b Cannondale
3. Enrico Battaglin (Ita) LottoNL-Jumbo
4. Simon Yates (GB) Mitchelton-Scott
5. Davide Formolo (Ita) Bora-Hansgrohe
6. Roman Kreuziger (Cze) Mitchelton-Scott at 0:04
7. Patrick Konrad (Aut) Bora-Hansgrohe
8. Luis León Sanchez (Spa) Astana
9. Domenico Pozzovivo (Ita) Bahrain-Merida
10. Esteban Chaves (Col) Mitchelton-Scott
11. Tom Dumoulin (Ned) Sunweb
12. Rohan Dennis (Aus) BMC
13. Thibaut Pinot (Fra) Groupama-FDJ
14. George Bennett (NZ) LottoNL-Jumbo at 0:10
15. Pello Bilbao (Spa) Astana
16. Richard Carapaz (Ecu) Movistar
17. Louis Meintjes (RSA) Dimension Data
18. Fabio Aru (Ita) UAE Team Emirates
19. Diego Ulissi (Ita) UAE Team Emirates
20. Carlos Betancur (Col) Movistar
21. Maximilian Schachmann (Ger) Quick-Step Floors
22. Tanel Kangert (Est) Astana
23. Wout Poels (Ned) Sky
24. Georg Preidler (Aut) Groupama-FDJ at 0:21
25. Sam Oomen (Ned) Sunweb.

Giro d’Italia Overall After Stage 4:
1. Rohan Dennis (Aus) BMC in 14:23:08
2. Tom Dumoulin (Ned) Sunweb at 0:01
3. Simon Yates (GB) Mitchelton-Scott at 0:17
4. Tim Wellens (Bel) Lotto FixAll at 0:19
5. Pello Bilbao (Spa) Astana at 0:25
6. Maximilian Schachmann (Ger) Quick-Step Floors at 0:28
7. Domenico Pozzovivo (Ita) Bahrain-Merida
8. Thibaut Pinot (Fra) Groupama-FDJ at 0:34
9. Patrick Konrad (Aut) Bora-Hansgrohe at 0:35
10. Carlos Betancur (Col) Movistar
11. José Gonçalves (Por) Katusha-Alpecin at 0:36
12. Davide Formolo (Ita) Bora-Hansgrohe at 0:37
13. Diego Ulissi (Ita) UAE Team Emirates at 0:47
14. Esteban Chaves (Col) Mitchelton-Scott
15. Tanel Kangert (Est) Astana at 0:50
16. Georg Preidler (Aut) Groupama-FDJ at 0:52
17. Valerio Conti (Ita) UAE Team Emirates at 0:53
18. Michael Woods (Can) EF Education First-Drapac p/b Cannondale
19. Luis León Sanchez (Spa) Astana at 0:54
20. Chris Froome (GB) Sky at 0:55
21. George Bennett (NZ) LottoNL-Jumbo at 0:56
22. Roman Kreuziger (Cze) Mitchelton-Scott
23. Rafael Valls Ferri (Spa) Movistar
24. Fabio Aru (Ita) UAE Team Emirates at 0:57
25. Sam Oomen (Ned) Team Sunweb at 1:00.

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