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George Bennett has finished in seventh place in the fourteenth stage of the Giro d’Italia. The champion of New Zealand was part of an early breakaway, but had to let go on the Monte Zoncolan. Tobias Foss didn’t have his best day and lost two places in the overall classification. He is now in eleventh place.
Eleven riders attacked early on in the stage, with next to Bennett also the number two from yesterday and the opening day Edoardo Affini for Team Jumbo-Visma. The eleven got a maximum lead of more than eight minutes. Affini made sure that the leading group was able to start the Zoncolan with a lead of over six minutes, but Bennett wasn’t able to respond to the attacks. Foss had to let the GC group go in the last three kilometres. He limited his time loss with the help of Koen Bouwman.
"Unfortunately I didn’t have the legs to compete for the stage victory"
“Unfortunately I didn’t have the legs to compete for the stage victory”, Bennett said. “It was a really tough stage. We went full throttle from the start and there was a lot of headwind. We had to fight for every second to stay ahead. Edoardo was really strong and he deserves all the credits, because he made the difference on the flat. As a result I didn’t have the power anymore at the beginning of the Zoncolan.”
"We had a clear plan and that was to go for the stage win with George or Koen"
“We had a clear plan and that was to go for the stage win with George or Koen”, sports director Arthur van Dongen said. “In the flat approach the plan was also to have Edoardo, Jos or Paul in the breakaway for support. That went perfectly according to plan. Edoardo did a fantastic job, but because Astana increased the pressure from behind it cost George, in particular, a little too much energy on the flat. He paid the price on the Zoncolan. That is a pity because normally such a climb suits him. Tobias had to pass on the steep part, but limited the damage thanks to Koen. He’s been riding very strongly throughout the Giro and he showed his great form again today.”