Downing joy

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Russell Downing had his best day in the Giro d’Italia with an eighth-place finish yesterday in the stage from Morbegno to San Pellegrino Terme

The Rotherham racer was part of a breakaway group that burst clear of the peloton with 48 kilometres remaining and although he was dropped on the day’s only climb the 32-year-old outsprinted four other riders or a top-10 finish.

Italian Eros Capecchi eventually won the stage from compatriot Marco Pinotti and Kevin Seeldrayers from Belgium. Spain’s Alberto Contador retains the race’s pink leader’s jersey.

Tomorrow Downing is back in the mountains on a 209km journey from Bergamo to Macugnaga. The Giro ends on Sunday in Milan.