SESTOLA, Italy (AP) – American Joseph Dombrowski neutralized the rest of the breakaway squad on Wednesday to win the fourth stage of the Giro d’Italia, his first victory on one of cycling’s great tours.
The Italian round also unveiled a new owner of the pink jacket, with local Alessandro De Marchi leading the overall standings.
UAE Team Emirates rider Dombrowski attacked in the first mountain finish of this year’s race, beating De Marchi by 12 seconds.
It was the 29-year-old Dombrowski’s first professional win outside the United States.
“It’s been a tough day, I wasn’t sure if the break was going to come, but when I saw that we had a 6-7 minute lead over the pack I started to believe,” said Dombrowski. “In the last kilometer of the climb I felt good, so I decided to open a hole and it was good for me.”
Another Italian, Filippo Fiorelli, came in third, 27 seconds behind Dombrowski at the end of a rainy and windy ride through the Apennines between Piacenza and Sestola.
De Marchi removed the ‘pink jersey’ from Filippo Ganna, who had led the Giro after winning the time trial that started the race on Saturday. The 34-year-old veteran rider maintains a 22-second margin over Dombrowski and a 42-second margin over Belgian Louis Vervaeke overall.
“I started thinking about trying to take the Pink Jersey two days ago, but I didn’t tell anyone,” De Marchi said. “Today I knew that I had to attack at the right time and that it would not be easy. A bit of luck helped and now here we are in the pink ”.
“I’ve get out of words. This jersey is the childhood dream of any runner ”, he added.
Colombian Egan Bernal launched a strong attack that allowed him to climb places in the general classification, ranking 11th – 1 minute and 39 behind the leader.
João Almeida was one of the candidates for the Giro title after leading the race for 15 days last year, but the Portuguese’s aspirations have evaporated after falling more than four minutes behind on Saturday.
Stage five on Wednesday will have a 177 kilometer (110 mile) flat course between Modena and Cattolica on the Adriatic coast.
The Giro will culminate on May 30 in Milan with an individual time trial.