Cohen Bowman won the 19th stage Gira d’Italia with a sprint finish ascent at Santuario di Castelmont on Friday.

Richard Karapaz held on to the leader’s pink jersey overall two days before the race finish in Verona, retaining a three-second lead over Jay Hindley.

Two weeks ago, Bowman defeated his four breakaway companions in an awkward final in his second leg after Potenza in southern Italy. Bowman’s final acceleration led him to the front, while Mauro Schmid had to brake hard to make a turn, and all three other members of the group parted in width, Andrea Vendram climbing the exit route for melee racing cars.

“I knew there was a left turn 100 meters away, so if I wanted to get a chance to win, I knew I had to go first. I started my sprint, I think, from the fourth position in the group. I went through the guys and went into the corner, ”Bowman said.

“I didn’t know the corner was so tight, actually. So we achieved this at a high rate, maybe 40,000 per hour or something. So I had to slow down a bit, and the guys behind me also had to, ”he said. “I am happy that no one crashed. But in the end, I think I’m a really honest racer, and if I’m wrong, I say so. But I don’t think I was wrong. I think I deserved this victory. “

Karapas failed, losing its key mountain lieutenant Richie Porto at the start of the 178-kilometer stage, which included three ascents and moved to neighboring Slovenia. Porte was dropped from the peloton during the first ascent of the day, the third category of Villanova Grotte, after a 70km race.

Organizers have confirmed that the 37-year-old Australian has dropped out of the Giro, which ends in Verona on Sunday.

The 12 people who broke away approached the main ascent of the day, Kalavrata to a height of more than 10.3 km and with a slope of 9.2 percent, on the peloton for more than nine minutes.

The four survivors lost just over a minute on this ascent near Caparet, the site of the historic defeat of the Italians in World War I.

Saturday, Stage 20 includes three beautiful climbs to the Dolomites, San Pellegrino, Pordoi to the highest point of this year’s race at an altitude of 2239 meters above sea level, which ends at Fedai, with an exciting steep climb in the last 5400 meters.

The final stage on Sunday is an individual time race in Verona at a distance of 17.4 km, where three years ago Ecuadorian Karapas won the overall victory.

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