3.25.2017

Procycling: Volta a Catalunya 6 The Big Split!

Incredible but true: Contador and Valverde attacked immediately and split the peloton on the first descent of the day. Chris Froome missed the move and is now losing 7'! 
In the front group there are about 50 riders, let's see who's in. 
But where is Contador going 40 km from the finish?! what an unpredictable race! Ok, he's going nowhere as the move is immediately neutralised
Meanwhile the gap is up to 12'! Snow beside the wet road, the front group is on La Mussara (1st cat.) the last climb of the day.
No attacks surprisingly. Dowm they fly, toward the line. Valverde is the new Mountain leader. 
The Froome's group summits La Mussara 21'30'' later.
14 km to go Cataldo and De Marchi attack. They have just a 10'' gap.
Aproaching the line, the peloton gets close. De Marchi launches the sprint while they are caught. Impey wins ahead of Valverde!

Daryl Impey:
“It was an interesting day today with the splits. We had quite a few guys in the front and in the end it was such a reduced front group.
I was just happy to have the legs for the sprint because I rode quite hard early on. We moved Yates up overall so to get the win on top of that is fantastic. Going into today’s stage I didn’t think I would have a good chance but the team rode so well. We knew it would be hard to drop the sprinters today but we had numbers in the front, Carlos Verona was doing strong turns so I am happy to finish it off with a win.”

Alejandro Valverde:
“It was another really tough day. The beginning of the stage was so fast, and it was all split down the first climb, which was even more difficult than the climbing itself. We always kept the front of the group and caught Froome unprepared behind, yet we only put Erviti out to work. There were so many teams interested on making that group stick, and the riders behind didn't have a chance to make up terrain. Now it's all down to Sunday. It shouldn't be a problem to keep the leader's jersey, yet we must race as focused as we've done over the week. There will surely be attacks and many riders are still pretty much together and up for the podium and top-ten fights. We will just try to continue as we've been doing during the last few days. Keeping our team together and working as brilliantly as my team-mates have done over the entire race is the only way to win this."

Chris Froome:
“We just caught out. We didn’t expect the race to split apart at that point and that the main split would go on a two kilometre descent. All it took was one rider a few wheels ahead of me to let the wheel go. On a really technical descent like that there was no way of getting round to close the gap. We chased really hard for about 50kms but we were making no ground on a group of that size ahead of us, so we had to call it a day at that point.I said coming into this race that I was here to suffer this week and that’s exactly what I’ve got out of it. Personally it was great to be up there yesterday with the best guys and to be feeling that good this early on in the season, but days like today are really tough. We just have to learn from them and move on."

MORE TO COME

RESULTS
STAGE
1 Daryl Impey (RSA) Orica-Scott 4:34:14
2 Alejandro Valverde (Spa) Movistar Team
3 Arthur Vichot (Fra) FDJ
4 Petr Vakoc (Cze) Quick-Step Floors
5 Alessandro De Marchi (Ita) BMC Racing
6 Nick van der Lijke (Ned) Roompot - Nederlandse Loterij
7 Dario Cataldo (Ita) Astana Pro Team
8 Lennard Kämna (Ger) Team Sunweb
9 Cyril Gautier (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale
10 Daniel Martin (Irl) Quick-Step Floors 
GC
1 Alejandro Valverde (Spa) Movistar Team 22:18:35
2 Alberto Contador (Spa) Trek-Segafredo 0:00:53
3 Marc Soler Gimenez (Spa) Movistar Team 0:01:06
4 Adam Yates (GBr) Orica-Scott 0:01:21
5 Tejay van Garderen (USA) BMC Racing Team 0:01:24
6 Daniel Martin (Irl) Quick-Step Floors 0:02:19
7 Steven Kruijswijk (Ned) Team LottoNl-Jumbo 0:02:46
8 Carlos Verona (Spa) Orica-Scott 0:02:50
9 George Bennett (NZl) Team LottoNl-Jumbo 0:02:51
10 Romain Bardet (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale 0:02:55

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