TORTONA, Italy — Tao Geoghegan Hart crashed on a rain-soaked road and left the Giro d’Italia on a stretcher during Stage 11, depriving the race of another overall contender three days after Remco Evenepoel tested positive for COVID-19 after reclaiming the pink jersey.
Geoghegan Hart, who won the race in 2020, stood third overall entering the stage, five seconds behind overall leader and Ineos Grenadiers teammate Geraint Thomas.
The entire Ineos team, plus Primoz Roglic, were involved in a crash with 43.5 miles to go. The team did not immediately provide a medical report on Geoghegan Hart.
While Thomas and Roglic quickly got up and got going again, Geoghegan Hart was loaded into an ambulance.
German rider Pascal Ackermann won the stage in a sprint finish ahead of Jonathan Milan and Mark Cavendish.
Thomas remained two seconds ahead of Roglic, while Joao Almeida moved up to third overall, 22 seconds behind.
The stage followed a lengthy 136-mile route from Camaiore to Tortona, with three lower-classification climbs. Before the stage started, four teammates of Evenepoel tested positive for COVID-19 and also pulled out.
Stage 12 is a 111-mile hill leg from Bra to Rivoli in the Piedmont region that features a second-category climb 20 miles before the finish.
The Giro ends in Rome on May 28th.
Geoghegan Hart crashes out of Giro d’Italia; Ackermann wins Stage 11 originally appeared on NBCSports.com