'I just went for it' - Sam Bennett on becoming the first Irishman in 30 years to win two Grand Tour stages

The Bora-Hansgrohe rider is the first since Sean Kelly to win multiple stages of a single Grand Tour.

LAST UPDATE | 17 May 2018

IRELAND’S SAM BENNETT earned an incredible win in the 12th stage of the Giro d’Italia to take his second of this year’s race.

The Bora-Hansgrohe rider, winner of the seventh stage last Friday at Praia Mare, broke away in the final 400 metres at the end of the 214km flat and twisty stage that finished on the Imola motor racing circuit.

Britain’s Simon Yates of Mitchelton-Scott holds the overall leader’s pink jersey, which he claimed a week ago, ahead of reigning champion Tom Dumoulin at 47sec, with Frenchman Thibaut Pinot third at 1min 04sec.

Four-time Tour de France winner Chris Froome is stuck down in a disappointing 12th place, more than three minutes off his compatriot’s pace.

Dutch rider Danny Van Poppel and Italian Niccolo Bonifazio finished second and third respectively behind the 27-year-old Irishman.

Friday’s 13th stage should suit the sprinters again over a mostly flat 180km between Ferrare and Nervesa della Battaglia, on the eve of the gruelling mountain stage finish at Monte Zoncolan.

Speaking after the stage, Bennett said he had to keep pushing after his team put him in great position:

“I saw two guys ahead, my team had done so much work for me and I couldn’t let them down. I just went for it.

“I looked back when I saw how far away the line was. I didn’t know if I would make it but I kept going and I pulled it off.”

He is the first Irish man to win multiple stages of a single grand tour since Sean Kelly at the 1988 Vuelta.

© – AFP, 2018

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‘You come to the Rás, there are zero rules. Every guy is aggressive and that just creates mental racing’

Ireland’s Sam Bennett sprints to impressive third place finish at stage 10 of the Giro d’Italia

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