Primož Roglič (Jumbo-Visma) won the opening stage of the Giro d’Italia, blitzing the eight-kilometre course in Bologna to take the first pink jersey (maglia rosa) of the race.
The Slovenian was the only man to break the 13-minute barrier on the stage, which included a two-kilometre, 9.7 per cent climb to the finish.
Simon Yates (Mitchelton-Scott), who set off almost three hours after Roglič, took second on the stage, 19 seconds down. Vincenzo Nibali (Bahrain-Merida) was third, a further four seconds back.
Roglič was the 12th rider to start on a day which flipped the usual time trial script. All of the main GC contenders started early in order to avoid potential thunderstorms. They didn’t materialise, however, leaving Yates free to race in similar conditions to his rivals, who completed the stage hours earlier.
It’s the second Giro d’Italia stage win of Roglič’s career, three years after his victory at the Chianti time trial at his debut Giro, back in 2016.
After his run, the Slovenian was his usual self – pleased to take the win while staying reserved about the future.
“I’m happy with it. It went well, I finished good and I’m happy with today’s performance,” said Roglič after finishing his ride. “It’s nice [to be in the lead]. It’s quite an advantage so I’m really happy with it.
“I tried to be focused. I did the recon some hours before the start. It’s not so big [on] tactics here – it’s not very technical, it’s quite honest, and at the end of the course, it’s full gas on the climb.
“It’s a nice gap and you always want more and more, but a win is a win. The first day is behind us and it’s a really nice start.”