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George Bennett has had to concede time in the fourth stage of the Giro d’Italia. The leader of Team Jumbo-Visma wasn’t able to follow the pace on the final climb to Sestola and crossed the line in the presence of Tobias Foss at just over three minutes from stage winner Dombrowski. He lost a minute and a half to Egan Bernal, among others.
The stage from Piacenza was affected by bad weather conditions. The stage was animated by a large leading group of twenty-five riders. They eventually competed for the stage win. Behind the breakaway, Bennett was brought to the final climb in an ideal position by Foss and Bouwman, but the rider from New Zealand was unable to keep up with the pace when the other GC riders attacked.
"On such a climb this loss is a lot, but on the other hand we have also just started. A lot can still happen."
Sports director Addy Engels didn’t see this one coming. “It definitely was not a good day. It didn’t go as we had hoped and expected. The circumstances were difficult because of the bad weather. George was affected by the cold in the end. Some people digest it better than others, but that is no excuse. We know about George that he can’t take the cold well. In the end he loses a minute and a half on the first GC guys and with the help of Tobias he has limited his time loss. On such a climb that is a lot, but on the other hand we have also just started. A lot can still happen in three weeks, as we have seen in the past. There is no reason to change tactics yet.”
Engels is also looking ahead to tomorrow’s sprinter stage. “Our sprinters did really well today and could stay in the peloton for a long time today. I think they did come through the day well. We will try again tomorrow.”