• Caleb Ewan celebrates winning Stage 8 of the Giro d'Italia (Getty)
Caleb Ewan (Lotto-Soudal) claimed stage 8 of the 102nd Giro d'Italia in a bunch gallop ahead of Elia Viviani (Deceuninck-Quick Step) and Pascal Ackermann (Bora-Hansgrohe) on a flat finish in Pesaro after a hilly day for the riders at the Giro.
By
SBS Cycling Central

19 May - 5:55 AM 

Ewan claimed the second Giro stage win of his career with his familiar aero sprinting position, surging clear in the final metres to take the victory.

“It surely is a relief for me," said Ewan. "Tomorrow, there is a time trial which is followed by a rest day. So I can enjoy the feeling of winning today for at least two more days. After the rest day, we will make up a new plan for the upcoming sprints.

"A Grand Tour stage win is always a goal. It is a fantastic feeling, certainly with all those strong sprinters who are participating in this Giro.

"This is my greatest victory so far at Lotto Soudal. I finished top three a lot of times already this year, but this win is the icing on the cake of the first part of this season. It really means a lot to me.”

Coming two years after his first Giro win back in Stage 7 of the 2017 Giro, Ewan exploded off the wheel of form quick man Ackermann and held off home favourite Viviani to win.

“We knew that today was going to be a risky finale, with a lot of curves and possibly, wet roads. That is why it was necessary to be at the front all the time, in which we succeeded well. The final turn was only 200 metres before the finish, so I needed to be in a perfect position there.

"I sat in the wheel of Ackermann and he had a teammate riding ahead of him. Beginning the sprint from third position was ideal for me. The sprint would have been too long for me if I was first after that turn. Then I maybe could not have kept pace high enough until the end.”

Ewan's win came on the longest stage of the 2019 edition of the Giro with the riders having to cover 239 kilometres along the Adriatic Sea between Tortoreto Lido and Pesaro. The course was mostly flat, although there were a few short climbs in the finale. 

“It was also a very long stage," said Ewan, "but when I won in Alberobello two years ago, it was after a long day of 224 kilometres as well. I think it is a great thing that I do not lose my sprint capacities after such long stages.”

Valerio Conti (UAE Team Emirates) retained the Maglia Rosa for the third straight day on the eve of the much anticipated individual 37.4 kilometre individual time trial from Riccione to San Marino.