Paris-Nice 5: Old School DeGendt

Embedded image permalinkMountains, points to collect for the Polka Dot Jersey and a fearless Thomas DeGendt. 
Old school. A 'Jensvoigt' as in cyclocross you say a 'Svenness': early break-away and till the finish, caught in the true last meter.
Then a bunch sprint and a classy win by Davide Cimolai.
Embedded image permalinkHigh pace since the start and on the first of many climbs. Riders attacking, riders dropped already. 
New attack by DeGendt, in Polka Dot Jersey, he got a small gap with Talansky and Sicard 1,5km to go to the top of the climb. Ten more points in his pocket and he goes on.
Poljanski and Silin bridged atop the KOM and the break stays away. More climbs and more points. Head down for DeGendt: he's in a mission.
But sprinters' teams and GC riders have got a mission too: 22 km to go Sky, ORICA-GE, BMC are chasing and the advantage of the five leaders goes down to 40". 
Embedded image permalink11km to go. The final climb is coming - Cote de Buisson, 1.8km, 4.3% - DeGendt is pulling hard at the front. Two riders are dropped - Sicard and Poljanski - 4km to go DeGendt attacks again and only Silin is able to follow.
The last kilometre is slightly hilly. Sillin cracks. DeGendt goes solo. The peloton is aproaching, trains already forming and full gas. 
Embedded image permalinkThe last man is caught at the last meter and Cimolai wins. But DeGendt is the man, his Jersey is way more red. A classy 'Jensvoigt' he did!

Thomas De Gendt:
"To bad I did not take the victory. After 380km in the attack, I start to feel my legs. Thanks to the team for giving me the support.
Of course you’re disappointed when you’re so close to the victory. It’s a pity, but we can’t change anything. The plan was to take points on the first climb if possible. I easily escaped the peloton at a moment when lots of riders got dropped. I picked up the points and normally it was the plan that I would wait for the bunch. But I asked the sports directors if I could stay in front because I felt I had really good legs and there were four strong riders with me. There was a good cooperation between us and I could take the maximum of the points on every climb. Then I aimed for the stage win. I came close.
With forty points lead on the second rider in the KOM classification it looks good, but it’s not sure yet. Tomorrow there are 51 points to gain, so all is still possible. We’ll have to wait for the first two climbs to see if someone will become a danger. If Gilbert or Sørensen attacks, I’ll have to follow, because they are my main opponents. If at least three riders take off, who don’t have any points yet, then I win the jersey.”

Andre Greipel:
"Does @DeGendtThomas have the same kind of pain limits then other riders?impressive work by him to save the climber jersey as well."
ORICA-GE DS Laurenzo Lapage:
“We spoke about it yesterday and after working so hard at the front to defend yellow yesterday, it was not up to us today to control the raceBut as the situation allowed, we competed at the end. The boys moved towards the front with two or three kilometres to go, like they have the previous days and that was perfect for Bling.
We have extended the lead on the green jersey, hopefully we can get a few more points tomorrow and bring it home on Sunday.”

Michal Kwiatkowski:
"It was very fast today and nervous. We passed 190 kilometers in four hours in 15 minutes, so that is proof it was a fast stage. But I am really happy with how the team rode for me today. They rode all day in the front, controlling the gap between the breakaway and the peloton, and then they made sure I could safely arrive at the finish. I kept the Yellow, which was the goal, and I have to thank my teammates for their good work. Tomorrow is already a difficult parcours and they predicted bad weather. So it's going to be tough. But, we are ready to defend the jersey and we will keep on fighting. We will see what we can do with the good team spirit that we have here. We will see where I will be in the GC after tomorrow's stage. I will just try my best with whatever situation there is in the final tomorrow, and then we will see what I can do in the mountain TT on Sunday."


Embedded image permalinkRESULTS
1 Davide Cimolai (Ita) Lampre-Merida 4:12:09
2 Bryan Coquard (Fra) Team Europcar
3 Michael Matthews (Aus) Orica GreenEdge
4 Nacer Bouhanni (Fra) Cofidis, Solutions Credits
5 Jose Joaquin Rojas (Spa) Movistar Team
6 Alexander Kristoff (Nor) Team Katusha
7 Matti Breschel (Den) Tinkoff-Saxo
8 Daniel Mclay (GBr) Bretagne-Séché Environnement
9 Samuel Dumoulin (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale
10 Sylvain Chavanel (Fra) IAM Cycling
11 Ben Swift (GBr) Team Sky
12 Michal Kwiatkowski (Pol) Etixx - Quick-Step
13 Geraint Thomas (GBr) Team Sky
14 Arnaud Demare (Fra) FDJ.fr
15 Wilco Kelderman (Ned) Team LottoNL-Jumbo
16 Rafael Valls Ferri (Spa) Lampre-Merida
17 Jakob Fuglsang (Den) Astana Pro Team
18 Laurens De Vreese (Bel) Astana Pro Team
19 Tom Dumoulin (Ned) Team Giant-Alpecin
20 Tejay Van Garderen (USA) BMC Racing Team
Embedded image permalinkGC
1 Michal Kwiatkowski (Pol) Etixx - Quick-Step 23:56:20
2 Richie Porte (Aus) Team Sky 0:00:01
3 Geraint Thomas (GBr) Team Sky 0:00:03
4 Tejay Van Garderen (USA) BMC Racing Team 0:00:27
5 Jakob Fuglsang (Den) Astana Pro Team 0:00:32
6 Tony Gallopin (Fra) Lotto Soudal 0:00:38
7 Rui Costa (Por) Lampre-Merida 0:00:41
8 Gorka Izagirre (Spa) Movistar Team 0:00:44
9 Tiago Machado (Por) Team Katusha 0:00:50
10 Rafael Valls Ferri (Spa) Lampre-Merida 0:00:51
11 Simon Spilak (Slo) Team Katusha 0:00:52
12 Fabio Aru (Ita) Astana Pro Team 0:00:53
13 Romain Bardet (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale 0:01:01
14 Luis Leon Sanchez (Spa) Astana Pro Team 0:01:12
15 Tom Dumoulin (Ned) Team Giant-Alpecin 0:01:13
16 Jean-Christophe Peraud (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale 0:01:23
17 Tim Wellens (Bel) Lotto Soudal 0:01:25
18 Riccardo Zoidl (Aut) Trek Factory Racing 0:01:30
19 Sylvain Chavanel (Fra) IAM Cycling
20 Mathias Frank (Swi) IAM Cycling 0:01:31

Embedded image permalinkPOINTS
1 Michael Matthews (Aus) Orica GreenEdge
1 Thomas De Gendt (Bel) Lotto Soudal
1 Michal Kwiatkowski (Pol) Etixx - Quick-Step

No comments: