Australian Matthew Lloyd claimed his maiden victory from a major three-week Tour when he won the sixth stage of the Tour of Italy, held over 172km from Fidenza to Marina di Carrara on Friday.
Italian Vincenzo Nibali of Liquigas kept the leader's pink jersey after finishing safely in the peloton.
Lloyd broke free from escape companion Rubens Bertogliati on the final category three climb before holding off the Swiss's challenge in the long run to the finish. German Danilo Hondo took third in a peloton sprint finish.
Nibali maintained his 13 second lead over team-mate and compatriot Ivan Basso with Valerio Agnoli third at 20 seconds.
Lloyd and Bertogliati made a break after about 45km and at one stage had opened up a lead of almost six minutes on the peloton. By the penultimate climb, a category two, which started around 50km from the finish, the gap had been reduced and several counter-attacks ensued.
But the front two held on until the final climb and shortly before the summit Lloyd made his move. When Lloyd went over the summit, with 11km still to go, he had a lead of 30sec on Bertogliati, which he increased to 47 with 5km remaining.
The Swiss could make no headway while a group of three chasers gave up the ghost in the final few kilometres and were swallowed by the peloton.
Saturday's undulating seventh stage is held over 222km from Carrara to Montalcino, and pays tribute to Italian great Gino Bartali - who died 10 years ago - as it snakes through some of the former Giro winner's training roads.
© AFP 2010
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