Yates wins Giro d'Italia ninth stage

“Giro d'italia”: the winner of the seventh stage was Sam Bennett

“Giro d'italia”: the winner of the seventh stage was Sam Bennett

Simon Yates won an uphill mountain finish to claim the ninth stage of the Giro d'Italia on Sunday (May 13) to extend his overall race lead as fellow Briton Chris Froome struggled.

Another British rider Simon Yates of the Mitchelton team kept the overall leader's pink jersey on the second mountain finish after a 209km run up though southern Italy from Praia a Mare to the monastery of Montevergine di Mercogliano.

"That one is for the boys who rode at the front all day", added Yates.

The advantage of Yates in the General classification after winning stage increased to 32 seconds.

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Four-time Tour de France victor Froome had been ninth, 1 minute and 10 seconds behind Yates.

He crossed the line seven seconds ahead of Italian Davide Formolo, in second, and overall contender Thibaut Pinot of France, who collected four seconds in time bonuses when he took third place.

"They've had a couple of tough days, always riding on the front for some very long stages, so that's for those guys".

"It was a good first day in the maglia rosa, relaxed at the start", Yates said. We have two more weeks coming up and hopefully we have some better days, " Team Sky coach Nicolas Portal said. "They won?t switch off, for sure this isn?t great news but they will keep fighting".

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He remains 16 seconds clear of Team Sunweb's Dutch defending champion Tom Dumoulin, who is second, with Yates' team-mates Esteban Chaves of Colombia another 10 seconds back in third.

Pinot accelerated with 1.5km to go and was followed by a small group including Yates, Chaves and Ricard Carapaz who jostled for victory heading towards the line.

The Giro has a second rest day before Tuesday's 10th stage, an undulating 239K (149-mile) route from Penne to Gualdo Tadino.

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