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"The guys that were there still with him did what they could to get him into a good position for the last climb but he didn’t have the legs to follow as a chase formed behind the leaders. The guys did what they had to do though.&...

Photo: Muscat Municipality/Paumer/B.Bade






25.03.2015 @ 19:16 Posted by Andy Pedersen

It was a select group of climbers and GC favorites that fought out the stage win on the third stage of the Volta Ciclista a Catalunya after a succession of tough climbs gradually whittled down the peloton. Team Giant-Alpecin missed out on the final selection to miss out on the top placings, with Warren Barguil first home in the third group on the road.


By the end of the stage the front group had clawed back some precious seconds on the riders who took 2’40” on the opening stage, but Pierre Rolland (Europcar) did enough to move into the overall race lead with still a healthy advantage ahead of 1’08” over second place and 2’14” ahead of the first rider from today’s lead group.


Caught behind firstly a crash on the uphill and then the downhill of the penultimate climb, Barguil slipped back into the third group on the final ascent today before coming home in 44th position, 1’34” down on the stage. The rest of the riders finished safely within the time limit having done what they could to support Barguil ahead of the last climb of the day and to limit the losses to the group in front.


At the front of the race it was Domenico Pozzovivo (AG2R) who came out on top with a late attack in the final kilometres from the select group of eight leaders that formed over the final climb within the last ten kilometres of the stage.


After the stage, coach Addy Engels gave his feedback to the Giant-Alpecin website:


“Everything went pretty well today until late on where the race really split up. It was clear what we had to do today to get Warren up there at the end and the key points that we picked out came good but late on we weren’t there.


“Warren lost positions on the second to last climb when caught behind Valverde’s crash, and then another crash on the technical descent saw him lose more ground. The guys that were there still with him did what they could to get him into a good position for the last climb but he didn’t have the legs to follow as a chase formed behind the leaders. The guys did what they had to do though.


“I think that tomorrow it will be all out again as the GC guys have to keep fighting to try and get as much time back as they can on Rolland. We will see what we can do on the stage and see what opportunities we have there.”



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