NAPLES, Italy (Reuters) – Thomas De Gendt claimed a fifth career grand tour stage win when he prevailed in the eighth stage of the Giro d’Italia at the end of a breakaway on Saturday.
The 35-year-old Belgian won a four-man sprint at the end of the 153-km ride in and around Naples to add to his 2012 Giro, 2017 Spanish Vuelta and 2016 and 2019 Tour de France stage laurels.
Davide Gabburo of Italy was second, and Spain’s Jorge Arcas came home third, with Harm Vanhoucke finishing fourth after pulling for his team mate and compatriot De Gendt in the finale.
Spaniard Juanpe Lopez retained the overall leader’s “maglia rosa” pink jersey after controlling Lennard Kaemna’s attacks on the last short climb of the day.
France’s Guillaume Martin, who had lost considerable time in the climb up Mount Etna earlier this week, made up for it by featuring in a large breakaway group in which Mathieu van der Poel was the most aggressive rider.
Dutch rider Van der Poel, however, failed to distance his rivals in the leading group and eventually paid for his efforts to finish seventh, 15 seconds behind De Gendt.
Sunday’s ninth stage is a gruelling mountain trek of 191km from Isernia to the Blockhaus.
(Writing by Julien Pretot; Editing by Hugh Lawson)