Ethan Hayter leads the Under 23 Giro d’Italia – colloquially named the Baby Giro – having taken victory in both the prologue and stage one.
The 10-day race kicked off on Thursday June 13, with Hayter the fastest over the 3.3 kilometre prologue in Riccione.
>> Subscribe to Cycling Weekly this Autumn and save 35%. Enjoy the luxury of home delivery and never miss an issue <<
Riding for the British Cycling Academy, Hayter extended his lead again on Friday’s 143.2km stage from Riccione to Santa Sofia, and will ride into stage two in the maglia rosa.
The race was characterised by a break of three, which escaped early on to build a lead of four minutes, before being swallowed by the chasing peloton with 5km remaining.
Coming over the crest of a climb, Hayter saw his opportunity and escaped with Georg Zimmermann (Radland Tirol) and Alexys Brunel (Groupama-FDJ) – who took second and third respectively whilst Hayter won the sprint.
“We were working for Matt Walls for the sprint and it was all going well and then I rode over the top of the last climb, to keep it strung out, and keep us both in position. A couple of our riders [Rhys Britton and Fred Wright] crashed which left us a bit weaker,” he said after the win.
“We got down that descent, and there was a few tired legs and [Alexys] Brunel from FDJ attacked and I followed him, along with a Tirol rider [Georg Zimmermann] and we just instantly got a gap. I knew I’d win the sprint from that group, so I made sure we stayed away.”
Hayter already won the A Travers les Hauts de France 2.2 stage race in France earlier this season, taking the overall and youth classification.
The long term VC Londres rider, who took up cycling following a ride at Herne Hill Velodrome aged 13, already has rainbow stripes attached to his name – having been a part of the winning team pursuit quartet at the 2018 Track World Championships.
The 20-year-old raced briefly with Team Sky as a stagiaire towards the end of the 2018 season.
Ahead of him at the Under 23 Giro are eight more stages, which he’ll contest alongside BC academy riders Wright, Britton, Walls, Stuart Balfour, and Will Tidball.