Tour du Loir et Cher Stage 3
The long it took at stage two for a group to develop, the fast it was today. After 5 kilometers of easy speed, one rider attacked, two followed him and another two jumped after a minute and bridged the gap. So five riders in total formed the breakaway of the day.
This was a really good situation to start this stage. Since me and Alex were fifth and fourth, there were three teams in charge of pursuit work before we were.
Of course it is not always that easy for example the leaders Team didn’t have aspirations to close the gap all the way since the yellow jersey has a lead of three to five minutes to the best rider in the group.
The pursuit work was basically done by the leaders team, Itera Katusha, us and BMC Plus Bank. Since Leopard and Katusha demonstrated their ambitions in a masssprint the day before and both teams also have riders in the top five, it was their duty to work.
Our plan tough was good. After the breakaway was released really quick and easy, „Brambo“ went to the cars and talked to Adriano. He told him to advice Alex and me to attack on the only climb (3k’s 4%) of the day and maybe form a group without the leader. We might not get rid of Katusha but this is ok. We did as he said, at Kilometer 160 we attacked with Giorgio and Eugenio pulling as strong as they could and Alex and me finishing the attack with another acceleration. For a moment it was only Alex, me and two Katusha riders. But the four of us were not united fast enough compared to the riders in the back.
Our well launched attack didn’t turn out successful so we kept on going at high speeds to the finishline where two final laps with two short climbs were to be done. Brambo told us to take care of ourselfs, he’ll make the sprint on his own today. But we just couldn’t finish the race without helping him. Entering the last Lap, „grande Eugenio“ pulled at 60km/h closing the gap to a breakaway and at the finishline Alex Pliushin took over the lead of the peloton forming one fast line. Brambo held up his hand witch ment to come to him or to go all the way to the front. I placed myself at position three right in front of him ready for pulling.
Than he said something I didn’t understand, he repeated and I understood something like: „When you want to go, go now“!
Well, I attacked...
At first it looked really good. I closed the gap to two of the remaining three escapees with one rider on my wheel. But again, the group didn’t work to well. We only reached the start of the descent, witch was at 1500m to the finishline.
Eugenio pulled the sprint for Brambo but unfortunately Brambo „din’t have the legs today“ We finished fifth and seventh, I came in at position 20. And am now fourth in the overall classement.