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  • Giro d'Italia, Stage Two

Kittel sprints to victory in Belfast

ESPN staff
May 10, 2014 « Van Gaal: I'll make history at United | Rashid's burst takes Yorkshire top »
Marcel Kittel is the 84th rider to take a stage victory at all three of cycling's Grand Tours © Getty Images
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Marcel Kittel triumphed on stage two of the Giro d'Italia after winning a sprint finish in Belfast ahead of Nacer Bouhanni and Elia Viviani.

The Giant-Shimano rider powered to the win after Maarten Tjallingii had looked to take victory by setting off on his own 10 kilometres from the end. Tjallingii was caught with around 3km left as Kittel kicked for the line with 50m remaining.

Michael Matthews of Orica GreenEdge now wears the pink jersey and takes the overall lead from Svein Tuft after finishing in eighth. Ben Swift of Team Sky - Britain's only representative in the Giro d'Italia - crossed the finish line in seventh spot on the 219km stage.

"The final run-in was pretty hectic because lots of teams were trying to be at the front," Kittel told BBC Sport. "My team tried to do a good lead-out and we got to the final corner in the front. I'm feeling good and motivated and super happy.

Kittel's win means he becomes the 84th rider to take a stage victory at all three of cycling's Grand Tours; the Giro, Tour de France and Vuelta a Espana.

"It is big. I wanted to achieve that record and now I can be relaxed for the rest of the race," Kittel said on the feat.

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