Giro d'Italia: Hindley celebrates a 'beautiful feeling' after clinching maiden Grand Tour title

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Jai Hindley celebrated his maiden Grand Tour triumph as he put heartbreak from 2020 behind him to win the Giro d'Italia.

Hindley went into Sunday's time trial with a one-minute, 25-second lead over Richard Carapaz, having overtaken the Ecuadorian in the Dolomites on Saturday.

The Australian was wearing the maglia rosa at the start of the final stage two years ago but finished second behind Tao Geoghegan Hart.

On that occasion, Hindley did not have a time advantage to play with however, and he did not let his lead slip in Verona.

"It's a beautiful feeling, I had a lot of emotions out there today," BORA-Hansgrohe rider Hindley said.

"I had in the back of my mind what happened in 2020, and I wasn't going to let that happen again. To take the win, it's incredible.

"I was getting updates and I felt pretty good on the bike. I wasn't really fighting it, so I knew I was on a decent ride.

"In the end, I took the descent pretty cautiously and then gave it everything to the line. It's an incredible feeling."

Hindley recorded a time of 23:55 across the 17.4km route, just over a minute-and-a-half slower than stage winner Matteo Sobrero (22:24), Italy's national time trial champion.

Carapaz, on his 29th birthday, was seven seconds faster than Hindley, but could not make a big enough dent as his place in second was confirmed, although he did extend his advantage on Mikel Landa.

Arnaud Demare's success in stages five, six and 13 meant he had already done enough to claim the maglia ciclamino, with Koen Bouwman confirmed as king of the mountains.

Australia's day

Hindley's victory makes him the first Australian to win the Giro d'Italia and came 20 years to the day since Cadel Evans became Australia's first wearer of the maglia rosa.

"The pink jersey, it’s the most beautiful jersey in cycling," Hindley said. "It's a privilege and an honour to wear this again. It was a bumpy road to get back here and I didn't know if I was going to get a chance to wear this again."

STAGE RESULT

1. Matteo Sobrero (Team BikeExchange-Jayco) 22:24
2. Thymen Arensman (Team DSM) +0:23
3. Mathieu van der Poel (Alpecin-Fenix) +0:40
4. Bauke Mollema (Trek-Segafredo) +1:08
5. Ben Tulett (INEOS Grenadiers) +1:12

CLASSIFICATION STANDINGS

General Classification

1. Jai Hindley (BORA-Hansgrohe) 86:31:14
2. Richard Carapaz (INEOS Grenadiers) +1:18
3. Mikel Landa (Bahrain Victorious) +3:24

Points Classification

1. Arnaud Demare (Groupama-FDJ) 254
2. Fernando Gaviria (UAE Team Emirates) 136
3. Mark Cavendish (Quick-Step Alpha Vinyl) 132

King of the Mountains

1. Koen Bouwman (Jumbo-Visma) 294
2. Giulio Ciccone (Trek-Segafredo) 163
3. Alessandro Covi (UAE Team Emirates) 102

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