Attacks began to fire after the first lap of the circuit, but not until the third lap did a breakaway stick. Sara Penton (Virtue Cycling), Carmela Cipriani and Chiara Perini worked together to increase their gap on the bunch to a maximum of 1’52”.

The peloton did not let the advantage stretch any further and coming into the final lap, the gap slowly began to close.

With 5.5km to go the three breakaway companions were caught, and the top teams organised their lead out trains for another sprint finish.

Mitchelton-Scott riders, Sarah Roy, Amanda Spratt and Gracie Elvin, positioned at the the front of the bunch, controlling the pace into the final technical kilometers.

Coming through the final corner in fifth position, Belgian Jolien D’hoore (Jolien D’hoore) began a long sprint to cross the line first.

Yesterday’s stage winner, Kirsten Wild (Wiggle High5) continued her good form to finished 2nd followed by American Alexis Ryan (Canyon-SRAM) in 3rd.

“Today was a flat stage and we decided in the team that it would be for me. So I was praying for a bunch sprint”, D’hoore commented after the race.

“It was a bit hectic and nervous and there were a lot of crashes, but I could stay safe and in perfect position in the last corner.”

The average speed for the flat 132 km course was 40 km/h.

TeamSunWeb will hold onto the General Classification lead for another day, this time with Leah Kirchmann to don the maglia rosa.

Australians Spratt and Elvin both comfortably maintain their position within the top 10 of GC.

Unfortunately Mitchelton-Scott teammate Lucy Kennedy was caught up in a crash in the final kilometers and will be unable to finish the tour.

Stage results

GC standings

Stage 4 preview

Monday’s stage 4 will see a race over 109 km of rolling terrain, starting and finishing in the city of Piacenza, Emilia Romagna.

The circuit includes a 3.4km climb at 6.5% around the halfway mark. This course may lend itself to a successful breakaway, but it is likely that the same teams will be will want to bring everything together for another sprint finale.