After the first three days in Hungary, the Giro regained its Italian routes on Tuesday, on the occasion of the fourth step. To celebrate this return home, the organizers did their best by inviting the platoon to break their teeth on the slopes of Mount Etna in Sicily.
And in this volcanic setting, it was Lennard Kämna (Bora-Hansgrohe) who triumphed to sign the sixth victory of his career, the second in a grand Tour after the success of the Tour de France in 2020.
The German won the title after spending much of the afternoon in the group of pursuers, behind the Italian Stefano Oldani (Alpecin-Fenix), who went on the attack at the foot of Mount Etna , about thirty miles from the arrival. Juan Pedro Lopez (Trek-Segafredo) was the first to reach the corner kick, but his header was blocked by the keeper.
Kämna, a breakaway specialist, then rushed to join the Spaniard. Les deux coureurs have changed a few words in the last few kilometers, how to negotiate, la victoire for l’Allemand and le maillot rose pour Lopez. This is exactly what happened: Kämna started the sprint at the exit of the last corner, before raising her arms a hundred meters further.
Van der Poel relegated 23 minutes into the game
The leader of the general this Tuesday morning, Mathieu Van der Poel (Alpecin-Fenix) therefore lost his pink jersey. The Dutchman, who had animated the start of the stage with a bold surprise attack, landed on the first ramps of the long ascent of Mount Etna. He crossed the finish line almost 23 minutes late on the winner and his dolphin.
Juan Pedro Lopez is a new leader, then the namesake and contender at the end of the victory, Miguel Angel Lopez (Astana-Qazaqstan), was forced to abandon 139 kilometers of line, visibly ill. Others of the day, Dutchman Tom Dumoulin, winner of the Giro in 2017, was nearly 10 kilometers away from the summit, and Italian Vincenzo Nibali, another former winner, also let go.
The other favorites, including the Frenchman Romain Bardet (Team DSM), the Briton Simon Yates (Team BikeExchange-Jayco) or the Ecuadorian Richard Carapaz (Ineos-Grenadier), arrived in groups in the peloton, at 2’37 Kämna. Guillaume Martin (Cofidis) finished in 4’08. On Wednesday, the race remains in Sicily for the 5th stage of 174 kilometers between Catania and Messina. A pass is located before the middle of the course but the end is favorable for sprinters.