Portuguese João Almeida (UAE) won the 16th stage of the Tour of Italy on Tuesday at the top of Monte Bondone where Briton Geraint Thomas (Ineos) took over the leader’s pink jersey after this first mountain meeting of the third week .

This is the first victory in a Grand Tour for Almeida, who flew away less than five kilometers from the finish with the winner of the Tour de France 2018. Thomas thus emerged from the 16th round in the lead of the general standings, while Frenchman Bruno Armirail (Groupama-FDJ) took the pink jersey for two stages.

Unable to follow his two main rivals for the final victory, the Slovenian Primoz Roglic (Jumbo-Visma) is one of the losers of the day and conceded nearly 30 seconds. The Frenchman Thibaut Pinot, released 9 km from the finish, is also in the wrong car. He finished 3:26 behind the winner, seeing his podium hopes dashed.

Armirail, his teammate at Groupama-FDJ, gave up only a few hectometres before him after having held off the best for a long time in the interminable final climb. The Frenchman conceded more than four minutes.

Geraint Thomas, who lost a new teammate after the abandonment of Frenchman Pavel Sivakov, had already worn the leader’s tunic for four days in this Giro before abandoning it at Armirail. In the general classification, the British veteran, who turns 37 on Thursday, is now 18 seconds ahead of Almeida and 29 seconds over Roglic.