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Bicycle Racing News and Opinion,
Saturday, June 12, 2021

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2020 Tour de France | 2021 Giro d'Italia

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Tour of Switzerland stage six team reports

We posted the report from GC leader Richard Carapaz's Team INEOS Grenadiers with the results.

Here's the report from stage winner Andreas Kron's Lotto Soudal team:

Andreas Kron was awarded stage six of the Tour de Suisse after former world champion Rui Costa was relegated. Rui Costa crossed the line first but Lotto Soudal’s Andreas Kron protested after Costa changed his line in the sprint and denied Kron the chance to sprint for the win. After race officials looked at the race footage, Kron was handed the stage win.

Andreas Kron

The sprint. Photo: Photo News

“I also saw the sprint footage in the truck at the finish line and the decision of the jury is right”, begins Andreas Kron. “We started the sprint on the right and ended up on the left. Both Rui and me think that we were the strongest. That’s fair. In a regular sprint we could have found out. I trust the jury and I’m the winner. I’m happy for that.”

For Andreas Kron it is his second WorldTour victory of the season in his first season being part of a WorldTeam. Earlier this year, the young Dane won the Volta a Catalunya opening stage.

“It just feels amazing. What a start. If you would have told me this in the beginning of the season I would never have believed it. I was born in 1998. Apparently a good year, as also riders like Hirschi and Pogačar are from ‘98. I need to keep up with them…”

In stage six of the Tour de Suisse, a 130-kilometre test from Andermatt to Disentis, the riders had to tackle three major climbs. On the final climb of the day, first Rui Costa and Hermann Pernsteiner bridged to De La Cruz, who attacked from a big breakaway group - which also included Andreas Kron – at 45 kilometres from the finish. With five kilometres to go Andreas Kron joined Costa and Pernsteiner at the front. A three-man sprint would decide the stage. Although Costa crossed the line in first place, Andreas Kron was awarded the stage win as Costa changed his line in the sprint and was relegated.

“I’m happy for myself but even more for my teammates”, concluded Andreas Kron. “They worked so hard for me the first days of this race, but yesterday I had a hard day and missed out my GC. It’s nice to give something back.”

Here's the report from Rui Costa's UAE Team Emirates:

Rui Costa came agonisingly close to claiming victory on stage 6 of the Tour de Suisse.

Costa, a three time former champion of the race, was first to cross the line at the finish in Disentis-Sedrun but after some discussion by the race jury he was later relegated to 2nd place after making a slight deviation of his position in the final metres.

It was a relatively short stage through the Swiss Alps at 130.1km between Andermatt and Disentis – Sedrun. The riders climbed the Gotthard Pass – 8.5km at 7.2 per cent – before tackling the Lukmanier Pass – 18km at 5.6 per cent.

After many attacks a large break of 42 riders went clear including several UAE Team Emirates riders, among them Ryan Gibbons, Marc Hirschi, David De La Cruz and Rui Costa.

De La Cruz hit out early from the group, cresting the penultimate climb with close to a minute on the pursuers. The front of the race came back together with Costa going clear with stage winner Andreas Kron (Lotto-Soudal) and Hermann Pernsteiner (Bahrain-Victorious), with the three disputing the final sprint.

Rui Costa: “I’m sorry for the decision of the jury but I need to accept it. Obviously I’m disappointed with the outcome. We did a great ride today as a team but the only thing we can do now is to focus and put our energy into the days to come.”

The former World Champion now sits in 10th place on GC at 3’37’’ off the lead of Richard Carapaz (Ineos-Grenadiers).

Stage 7 will be a test against the clock with an individual time-trial from Disentis Sedrun to Andermatt (23.2km).

And here's the report from Matteo Fabbro's Team Bora-hansgrohe:

Today the Tour de Suisse went into the high mountains on a 130 km long course. After the start in Andermatt, the riders had to conquer two legendary climbs, the Gotthard Pass and the Lukmanier Pass, before they reached Disentis-Sedrun. Right after the start, a series of riders attempted to break free but no one was able to decisively get away.

At the halfway point, a group including Matteo Fabbro eventually went clear. Several kilometres later more riders joined the leaders, while behind them on the climb to the Lukmanier Pass, the peloton split into several groups. On the steepest part of the ascent, several riders attacked from the large breakaway, which had a lead of about 3 minutes over the decimated peloton with 40 km left. Matteo managed to follow the attacks and crested the Lukmanier Pass in the first chasing group behind the solo breakaway rider D. de la Cruz.

On the descent, the group including the Italian BORA - hansgrohe rider was able to edge closer to the leader, and at the beginning of the final climb, several chasers joined the soloist out front. In the end, A. Kron took the win in a sprint from the remaining breakaway trio. Matteo ended up in 9th place while Maximilian Schachmann finished in the group of favourites and remains third overall ahead of tomorrow's time trial.

From the Finish Line:
"It was pretty hard today, but I had good legs. I wanted to try to get into the breakaway, but it wasn't that easy because the peloton wouldn't let us go. Eventually, a big group managed to go clear. I was able to counter all the attacks there and was also part of one of the first groups on the final climb. I tried to attack again at the end, but I was quickly caught again and wasn’t able to fight for the victory. But I'm still very happy with my performance today and we still have a mountain stage on Sunday, so let's see what will be possible there." - Matteo Fabbro

"It was a super fast start. Alaphilippe tried to break the field and was able to get away with a small group, but then waited for the peloton again a little later. We tried to get into the leading group with Matteo as well, and that worked out in the end. Unfortunately, the group was very big and although he gave his best in the final, he was unable to follow Rui Costa's attack and ended up ninth. The finale was not optimal for him, but he wanted to use this chance to ride for the stage win." - Steffen Radochla, Sports Director

Baloise Belgium Tour stage three team reports:

We posted the report from stage winner Caleb Ewan's Lotto Soudal team with the results.

Here's the report from GC leader Remco Evenpoel's Deceuninck-Quick step team:

Deceuninck – Quick-Step will go into the queen stage of the Belgium Tour with Remco Evenepoel and Yves Lampaert on the first two positions of the general classification, after they both came home with the peloton at the end of the 174.4km undulating stage 3 that travelled between Gingelom and Scherpenheuvel-Zichem.

Caleb Ewan

Caleb Ewan takes the third stage. Photo: Photo News.

Our team once again assumed pace-setting duties, holding the five-man break at three minutes before deciding to ramp up the speed when the race entered the local circuit, which was due to be covered three times. Iljo Keisse did the bulk of the work at the front, while Omloop Het Nieuwsblad winner Davide Ballerini tracked down some late moves that came over the top of a short hill and made sure it would all come down to a mass gallop.

Mark Cavendish was well placed ahead of the flamme rouge, but the former World Champion was boxed in at a key moment of the stage and lost the wheel of his lead-out man Michael Mørkøv, who went on to sprint for himself, taking a solid third as Caleb Ewan (Lotto-Soudal) claimed the win. Remco Evenepoel finished in the same time and will carry a 45-second advantage into the most important stage of the race.

“It was a fairly calm day, and I owe it to the team, because they all did an excellent job, keeping me out of the wind and working hard at the head of the bunch. On Saturday we’ll have the queen stage of this edition and it will be a nice feeling to have the blue jersey again on my shoulders, as it gives me a lot of motivation. It’s going to be a short and nervous stage with plenty of climbs, many attacks and some high temperatures that could play a part, but I look forward to it”, said Remco after his second consecutive day at the top of the rankings.

Here's the stage three report from Team DSM:

A predominantly flat 174 kilometre long parcours lay ahead of the riders this afternoon as they rolled out from the start town of Gingelom, and a stage that was expected to end in a bunch sprint. A flurry of attacks saw a five rider breakaway escape with relative ease in the opening kilometres, quickly building up a three minute advantage over the peloton before things stabilised.

With the sprint teams taking control of the bunch, the gap to those ahead slowly dwindled throughout the afternoon. The breakaway put up a good fight though but they were eventually caught at three kilometres to go. The team were initially in a good position with sprinter Cees Bol but on the twisting and turning run in, it was hectic in the bunch with a lot of movement. Going under the flamme rouge the team lost each other in the chaos and with Bol too far back to sprint, Nils Eekhoff gave it his best and crossed the line in tenth place for the team.

Team DSM coach Luke Roberts said: “It was a pretty controlled stage today and was one for the sprinters. We did well earlier in the stage with our positioning and looking after each other but in the hectic run in to the line the guys lost each other and we were then too far back to go for a top result. We’ll sit down and analyse what happened in the finale and take some learning points with us for our next opportunity, where we’re motivated to go for a better result.”

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