Pascal Ackermann claims biggest win of his career in Stage 2

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Pascal Ackermann

German Pascal Ackermann won a high-speed bunch sprint on his Giro d’Italia debut to claim the second stage in Fucecchio.

Bora-Hansgrohe rider Ackermann edged out Italy’s Elia Viviani to win in four hours 44 minutes and 43 seconds.

The bunch finish meant no change to the overall lead, with Slovenia’s Primoz Roglic still in the pink jersey after the 205km stage from Bologna.

Team Jumbo-Visma’s Roglic has a 19-second lead over Britain’s Simon Yates.

Two-time Giro winner Vincenzo Nibali, of Bahrain-Merida, is a further four seconds behind the Mitchelton-Scott rider, from Lancashire, in third place overall.

German national champion Ackermann, making his Giro debut this year, just avoided a rider crashing in front of him during the finale before holding off Viviani, the Italian national champion.

Australian Caleb Ewan of Lotto-Soudal came in third behind the Deceuninck-QuickStep rider, with UAE Team Emirates’ Fernando Gaviria fourth.

“I’m so happy, this is my first chance to win a stage and we did it,” said Ackermann.

“We were super motivated. It bodes well for the rest of the Giro.

“We saw with 250 metres to go that none of the sprinters had started the sprint.

“I decided to take my speed and go full gas and luckily it was enough.”

The three-week race continues on Monday with a 220km stage from Vinci to Orbetello.

General classification after stage two:

1. Primoz Roglic (Slo/Team Jumbo-Visma) 12mins 54secs

2. Simon Yates (Gbr/Mitchelton-Scott) +19secs

3. Vincenzo Nibali (Ita/Bahrain-Merida) +23secs

4. Miguel Angel Lopez (Col/Astana) +28secs

5. Tom Dumoulin (Ned/Team Sunweb) Same time

6. Rafal Majka (Pol/Bora-Hansgrohe) +33secs

7. Tao Geoghegan Hart (Gbr/Team Ineos) +35secs

8. Laurens De Plus (Bel/Team Jumbo-Visma) Same time

9. Bauke Mollema (Ned/Trek-Segafredo) +39secs

10. Damiano Caruso (Ita/Bahrain-Merida) +40secs

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