Josef Cerny won a shortened stage 19 in the Giro d'Italia for his first Grand Tour stage victory.

The CCC rider attacked from the main break with 21 kilometres to go and held off a late chase from Victor Campenaerts to secure victory.

"It’s incredible, I have no words," Cerny said speaking just after the stage finish.

"Today my dream has come true, I am very happy. I dedicate this success to my team and my family! I still cannot believe it, I cannot describe how I’m feeling right now."

In the race for the Maglia Rosa, it was retained by Wilco Kelderman from team Sunweb who leads the general classification over team-mate Jai Hindley.

The stage was shortened, with the riders covering less than half the planned 258km distance after concerns were raised over heavy rain which could risk riders’ safety. 

The Professional Cyclists Association wanted the stage to start 124km from the finish in Asti, with the riders having taken team buses to the revised starting point.

However, Giro race director Mauro Vegni said: "I’m very upset about the way this has happened. It isn’t right.

"I think there are going to be some words with lawyers here. I don’t feel it’s respectful to the race, to the people who want to watch the race. There’s no real respect. We think there will be consequences of the actions of the riders today.

"The stage was announced a year ago. We knew it was going to be happening in October. A rainy day in October is quite a usual thing. Thirteen degrees is not cold. I don’t think there are excuses."