Ethan Hayter took the third stage of the Settimana Internazionale Coppi e Bartali 2021 from a bunch sprint ahead of Shane Archbald and Nick Schultz.
Hayter (Ineos Grenadiers) managed to sprint to a convincing win on the third stage of the Italian race after a tough 139km loop starting and finishing in the town of Riccione, taking in eight climbs, three of which were categorised.
The final 10km was flat which gave sprinters a chance to regroup with their lead-outs and come to a mass sprint. Hayter looked to win comfortably ahead of New Zealander Shane Archbald (Deceuninck – Quick-Step) with Nick Schultz (BikeExchange) filling out the podium spots on the day.
After those front three most of the riders in the top ten were climbers or punchers, which showed how tough the day was.
There was no sign of Mark Cavendish (Deceuninck – Quick-Step), who took second on the opening stage behind Jakub Mareczko (Vini Zabù), being up there as he was distanced on the tough climbs mid-stage, but his lead-out man, Archbald, put in a very solid sprint.
This is only Hayter’s second career win, also his second in Italy, with his first at the Giro dell’Appenino in 2020. The British rider has shown good form this season with 22nd place at the climbing race of GP Industria & Artigianato as well as fifth in the mountain standings of Etoile de Bessèges.
Jonas Vingegaard (Jumbo-Visma), who won stage two of the race, holds onto his overall lead with two tough stages left to go after taking the GC lead off of Cavendish on the second day.
The stage win has meant that Hayter and Schultz are just one second behind the Danish Jumbo-Visma rider going into the final two stages.
The remaining stages are both tough ones that will suit riders such as Vingegaard. Stage four starts and finishes in the principality of San Marino with the final stage taking in seven laps around Forlì to decide the race winner.
The race is not televised in the UK, but it is a 2.1-ranked race that carries a lot of history and has nine WorldTour teams riding including Israel Start-Up Nation, Deceuninck – Quick-Step and Ineos Grenadiers.
Settimana Internazionale Coppi e Batali 2021, stage three, Riccione to Riccione (139km)
1. Ethan Hayter (GBr) Ineos Grenadiers, in 3-49-21
2. Shane Archbold (NZl) Deceuninck – Quick-Step
3. Nick Schultz (Aus) Team BikeExchange
4. Filippo Mosca (Ita) Trek-Segafredo
5. Natnael Tesfatsion (Eri) Androni Giocattoli-Sidermec
6. Orluis Aular (Ven) Caja Rural-Seguros RGA
7. Vincenzo Albanese (Ita) Eolo-Kometa
8. Davide Gabburo (Ita) Bardiani-CSF-Faizanè
9. Cristian Scaroni (Ita) Gazprom-RusVelo
10. Simone Velasco (Ita) Gazprom-RusVelo, all at the same time
General classification after stage three
1. Jonas Vingegaard (Den) Team Jumbo-Visma, in 10-37-46
2. Ethan Hayter (GBr) Ineos Grenadiers, at 1 second
3. Nick Schultz (Aus) Team BikExchange
4. Iván Sosa (Col) Ineos Grenadiers, at the same time
5. Ben Hermans (Bel) Israel Start-Up Nation, at 3s
6. Javier Romo (Esp) Astana-Premier Tech, at 10s
7. Mauri Vansevenant (Bel) Deceuninck – Quick-Step, at 11s
8. Mikkel Frølich Honoré (Den) Deceuninck – Quick-Step, at 14s
9. Kevin Colleoni (Ita) Team BikeExchange, at 20s
10. Sergio Luís Henao (Col) Team Qhubeka-Assos, at 31s.