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Giacomo Nizzolo sprinted to an incredible first-ever grand tour stage victory, on stage 13 of the Giro d'Italia. The Team Qhubeka ASSOS (www.TeamQhubeka.com) sprinter broke his duck of 19 grand tour stage podiums without a win, by taking the top step in Verona today.
Starting in Ravenna, the stage covered a mostly flat 198km route to finish with a mass sprint in Verona. The Italian and European champion, Nizzolo, already having placed 2nd twice at this year's Giro d'Italia, was determined to not be denied once again.
Team Qhubeka ASSOS took the reins in the peloton over the final 10km, keeping Nizzolo up front and out of trouble through the tricky final kilometers. A committed team effort ensured Nizzolo had the opportunity to sprint for the win today.
As Edoardo Affini (Jumbo-Visma) got a slight jump on the peloton in the home straight, Nizzolo had to come from some way back over the final 400m, launching his sprint early. With superior speed, Nizzolo was able to slingshot passed his compatriot in the final 50m to take a stunning stage win.
Following Mauro Schmid's incredible stage triumph on stage 11 of the Giro d'Italia, this is the 2nd stage victory for Team Qhubeka ASSOS at this year's race. With other top 10 stage placing's from Max Walscheid and Victor Campenearts, and Nizzolo wearing the Maglia Ciclamino in the opening week, this is undoubtedly the most successful Giro d'Italia for Team Qhubeka ASSOS.
Watching the sprint takes me back to the moment and it is such an emotional feeling. The only thing I wanted to do today was to be able to sprint, without being blocked, and just show to myself what power I had in my legs and that's what I did.
I am super happy and just want to enjoy this moment. The first person I called was my mother, it was special, and to my dad who couldn't be here today as he had surgery a few days ago, this was for him.
I felt so much confidence from the team today, they were always around me, not only today but throughout the week. So, I am really happy to give them this victory as it is not only mine but for the whole team, for the purpose we race for, bicycles change lives. After Mauro's victory two days ago, you can be sure there will be another big “Ubuntu” celebration tonight.
Distributed by APO Group on behalf of Team Qhubeka ASSOS.
Jean Smyth (Head of Communications)
Mobile: +27 63 4701 1710 or +31 625 739 033
About Team Qhubeka ASSOS:
Team Qhubeka ASSOS is a purpose-led, high-performance team, fighting to win on the world's biggest stage, to inspire hope and create opportunity. Founded in 2007, Team Qhubeka ASSOS (formerly NTT Pro Cycling) became the first-ever African cycling team to gain a UCI WorldTour license, in 2016.
We achieved our first major win in 2013 when Gerald Ciolek won Milan-San Remo, one of the five Monuments of cycling. We have competed in six Tour de France’s and notched up 7 stage wins, with Mark Cavendish wearing the coveted Yellow Jersey at the 2016 Tour de France.
We are a multicultural, diverse team with bases in South Africa, the Netherlands and Italy. There are 19 nationalities represented across our World Tour and continental feeder team rosters. Our focus on developing African cycling has resulted in more than 55 riders from the African continent be given the opportunity to race on the world stage, since the team's inception.
We race to help people to move forward with bicycles through our relationship with Qhubeka Charity. Through our work with Qhubeka, we have contributed to the distribution of over 30 000 bicycles in communities in South Africa.
Qhubeka is a charity that moves people forward with bicycles. People earn bicycles through our programmes, improving their access to schools, clinics and jobs.
A bicycle is a tool that helps people to travel faster and further, and to carry more. In the face of extreme and persistent poverty, bicycles can change lives by helping to address socioeconomic challenges at the most basic level – helping people to get where they need to go.
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