In less than three years after moving from the U23 ranks with the Hagens Berman Axeon Cycling Team to the World Tour, Jhonatan Narváez (INEOS Grenadiers) earned his first win at a Grand Tour taking the victory on stage 12 at the Giro d’Italia on Thursday.
The young Ecuadorian secured his place on the podium’s top step after spending the entire day in the breakaway, finally escaping his closest challenger, Mark Padun (Bahrain - Mclaren). His win marks the third time an Axeon alum has won a stage at the 2020 Giro following the triumphs of Alex Dowsett (Israel Start-Up Nation) and Ruben Guerriero (EF Education First Pro Cycling) on stages 8 and 9.
“This feels so good because it was a really hard stage with the cold, the rain,” Narváez told reporters. “It means a lot for any professional rider to win here at the Giro d’Italia and especially so for me. I want to dedicate this victory to Nico Portal, the Ineos directeur sportif who passed away. He taught me everything I know as a rider.”
Alumnus João Almeida (Deceuninck-QuickStep) continues to remain in the maglia rosa jersey, having held the lead in the general classification for the tenth straight day. Nine stages remain.