Démare tops Ewan in a photo finish on Giro stage 6

Arnaud Démare takes his second win so far this Giro by the narrowest of margins.

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Arnaud Démare (Groupama-FDJ) took his second Giro d’Italia stage win in as many days by the smallest of margins on Thursday, pipping Caleb Ewan (Lotto Soudal) in a photo finish on stage 6 with Mark Cavendish (Quick-Step Alpha Vinyl) just behind in third.

“Right on the line, I felt like I was in front, but you never know. You don’t know if the victory was there yet,” Démare said afterwards. “I’m really happy. The victory played out with no margin at all.”

Démare’s Groupama-FDJ teammates delivered their sprint leader deftly through a chaotic final kilometer, with Cavendish and Ewan both having to make up ground after their own lead-outs unraveled. Fernando Gaviria (UAE Team Emirates), meanwhile, made contact with Cees Bol (DSM), taking both riders out of contention. Gaviria was later relegated.

After working back up to the front, Cavendish and then Ewan launched their sprints, while Démare slotted in behind them and bided his time.

With only 50 meters to go, he surged forward to the right of the Cavendish and Ewan. Démare took the victory with his bike throw, although nobody celebrated the oh-so-close sprint at the line. After the jury reviewed the finish line photo, however, Démare was declared the winner.

“They started strongly but I hadn’t done my effort yet, so I just had to find the right moment yet,” Démare said. “I wanted to find the right place, the right moment to get past, and I knew it was going to be very close. I threw the bike and that was the difference.”

With the win, Démare extended his lead in the points classification, taking firmer control of the maglia ciclamino already on his shoulders. He also became the Frenchman with the most Giro stage wins in history with seven in his career.