Fernando Gaviria wins his 4th stage of this year's Giro d'Italia

Fernando Gaviria celebrates winning 2017 Giro d'Italia Stage 12.jpg

Gaviria became the first rider since Bernard Hinault in 1978 to win four stages on a first appearance at a Grand Tour, with the Frenchman achieving the feat at the Vuelta a Espana.

Gaviria lost position on the final bend with 300 metres to go, and Orica-Scott's Caleb Ewan looked well positioned to challenge for what would have been his second stage victory in the race. "To me it means that I came to the Giro well prepared". His Bora-Hansgrohe team had done a superb job of positioning him but, right before the line in Tortona, Fernando Gaviria (QuickStep Floors) darted past Bennett and grabbed the win.

Overall, Tom Dumoulin (Sunweb) remained 2min, 23sec ahead of 2014 victor Nairo Quintana (Movistar) and 2min 38sec ahead of Bauke Mollema (Trek-Livestrong).

Dumoulin leads by two minutes and 23 seconds from Quintana, with Trek-Segafredo's Bauke Mollema a further 15 seconds back in third. "For most of the day it was side wind".

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"Today (Friday) was once again a great job from the team", said the Dutchman, who took command of the race with an impressive 10th stage time trial win on Tuesday. The Welshman, who spent the previous year preparing for the Giro, was still suffering from the effects of a crash in the ninth stage and had lost time in the last two days.

He held on for a superb victory on the 161km stage between Florence and Bagno di Romagna, edging out former world champion Rui Costa of Portugal (UAE Emirates) who produced a late challenge in a sprint for the line. Many of them are expected to leave the race, although Gaviria has said he will continue for as long as possible.

Maestri maintained his advantage until he was swallowed by the peloton with around seven kilometres remaining, handing a predominantly flat and unremarkable stage over to the sprinters.

Gaviria tightened his grip on the sprinters" "ciclamen' jersey, which he intends to secure if he manages to get over the mountains in a climb-heavy third week to finish in Milan on May 28.