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"Contador was with me and we had a good pace, but for me to be able to to get back to them after the tremendous effort that I made ​​at the start of climb was really hard."

Photo: A.S.O.

ASTANA QAZAQSTAN TEAM

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JAKOB FUGLSANG

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TANEL KANGERT

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TOUR DE FRANCE

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VINCENZO NIBALI

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26.07.2015 @ 00:07 Posted by Emil Axelgaard

"We got Vincenzo into the right place at the right time but then the flat tire put us back in the wrong place."

 

Those were the words of Tanel Kangert after stage twenty at the Tour de France. Kangert and his teammates Michele Scarponi and Jakob Fuglsang guided Vincenzo Nibali to the base of Alpe d'Huez, the final climb of the 2015 Tour de France, to create opportunities and possibly rise higher in the General Classification on Saturday.

 

Nibali found himself with a flat rear tire at the base of the climb, with 14km to the finish. Team mechanics quickly replaced the entire bicycle of the 2014 Tour de France champion, and Kangert, Scarponi and Fuglsang all waited to bring Nibali back to the leaders.

 

With maximum teamwork and concentrated effort, Nibali regained lost time but was unable to respond as attacks quickly exploded the elite group of leaders at the front of the race. Nibali finished 3:30 behind stage winner Thibaut Pinot of France, but held on to 4th overall behind race leader Chris Froome of Great Britain.

 

"That's cycling, we can not do anything about it," Niabli said. "I tried to make a good comeback. I came close to the yellow jersey but then it was really difficult to keep up with that group. Contador was with me and we had a good pace, but for me to be able to to get back to them after the tremendous effort that I made ​​at the start of climb was really hard.

 

"I am happy to have fought in the last week with these important climbs. Then there is yesterday's victory after a break of 60km.

 

"Now I will take a break for a week. I'm happy to be with my family tomorrow, there is nothing more beautiful. I'll take a short breather and then I'll probably do the Vuelta."

 

 "The goal today was to try and get Vincenzo on the podium and we knew that it wouldn't be easy, especially after the stage he did yesterday, where he spent a lot of energy," Fuglsang said. "We wanted to try, but the plan didn't really succeed. It was the worst moment of the day to have a mechanical, but it happened and that's racing.

 

"The luck hasn't really been on our side at this Tour, last year, everything went so well, this year nothing worked out the way that we wanted it to. We kept fighting all the way to the end and I think the victory from Vincenzo showed that we kept our morale high and the whole team has been fighting all the way. At least we come away with a stage victory and a fourth place overall. We gave it everything, it's difficult to be happy with the outcome but I think we can be proud of the way we raced."

 

Sunday's 110km around Paris will finish at the Champs Elysees in front of tens of thousands of fans, but is largely ceremonial and will not see any changes in the overall classification.

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