More problems for George Bennett

The Nelson cyclist George Bennett has suffered technical problems on the 16th stage of Giro d‘Italia to drop another couple of places to 10th overall.

Just days after losing a chain, Bennett had bike issues again.

Nelson cyclist George Bennett. Photo: PHOTOSPORT

His Dutch Lotto team has described the problem with the bike as pure bad luck and nothing a mechanical can be responsible for.

Bennett finished 56th on the stage a 34km individual time trial and he‘s now seven minutes behind overall leader Simon Yates of England.

Yates took another step towards winning the Giro after coming through the stage with a 56-second overall lead.

Australian Rohan Dennis took a blistering victory on the ride from Trento to Rovereto but it was Yates who deserved all the plaudits for another gutsy ride with the 22nd fastest time.

Tom Dumoulin, the world time trial champion, was expected to take a huge chunk out of Yates‘ lead but the Dutchman finished 22 seconds adrift of Dennis in third spot as his hopes of retaining the title took a hit.

Yates, who had started the day 2 minutes and 11 seconds ahead of Dumoulin, was delighted to have held on to the pink jersey.

“I‘m really happy (with the gap on the chasing pack),” Yates, who finished the stage in 22nd place, told Eurosport.

“In the first half I had a good rhythm, I wasn‘t losing so much time and really trying to hold my position.

“The final 10k, I really died a thousand deaths and thought I‘d lose a lot more time, but I didnG��t. It really changes my tactics for the coming days. It‘s a good gap and I‘ll see what I can do.”

Four-time Tour de France champion Chris Froome delivered a solid performance to finish the stage fifth and move back up to fourth in the general classification, three minutes and 50 second behind Yates.

-RNZ/Reuters