Giro d'Italia stage 18: Home rider Damiano Cima wins in sprint finish

Damiano Cima celebrates winning a stage at the Giro d'Italia
Damiano Cima celebrates winning a stage at the Giro d'Italia

Italian rider Damiano Cima won the 18th stage of the Giro d'Italia after a thrilling sprint finish in Santa Maria di Sala.

It was Cima's first stage victory in the race, ensuring a memorable day for him and his team Nippo-Vini Fantini-Faizane.

Germany's Pascal Ackermann finished second, with another Italian - Simone Consonni - taking third following the 222km stage from Valdaora.

Cima broke clear of the peloton with Nico Denz and Mirco Maestri, and he held his nerve despite escalating pressure to edge out a frustrated Ackermann after Denz and Maestri were caught.

The overall classification remained unchanged, with Ecuador's Richard Carapaz taking a lead approaching two minutes into Friday's 19th stage.

Italy's Vincenzo Nibali retained second spot, while Primoz Roglic is a further 22 seconds back in third.

British challengers Simon Yates and Hugh Carthy hold eighth and 13th positions respectively.

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