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“Actually I’m convinced that we could have won the GC with Bodnar. It was our fault that we didn’t put the hammer down in the final kilometers of stage 5. But we have many important races to come."

Photo: Qatar Cycling Federation/Paumer/B.Bade






13.02.2015 @ 17:26 Posted by Emil Axelgaard

This year’s edition of Tour of Qatar was sealed today in Doha and the overall classification was equally decided. Tinkoff-Saxo’s Maciej Bodnar finished 2nd in the general classification just six seconds behind race winner Niki Terpstra. The final stage was concluded in a final sprinter’s duel, where Peter Sagan finished 4th behind stage winner Sam Bennett. Sagan could also claim his first jersey for Tinkoff-Saxo, as he finished atop the young rider classification.


With Tour of Qatar 2015 finished, Tinkoff-Saxo’s Sport Director Tristan Hoffman takes stock and assesses the last six days of tough, windy and dramatic racing.


“Overall I’m happy with the result. Of course we would like to have won the race and a stage win, but we did what we could. The overall GC and the stages, where Sagan came in second, were decided by really small margins. But we also have to give credit to Terpstra, who won overall. He was strong and a tough adversary during the race”, says Tristan Hoffman and adds:


“I’ve seen some very promising signs ahead of the big races of the season. We were close to the yellow jersey on stage 5 after great teamwork in the crosswind and today we saw a very good lead-out for Sagan. We take that with us and hopefully we can benefit from it already at Tour of Oman next week”.



Strong foundation ahead of next races

The 124.5km stage to Doha Corniche with finish along the waterfront turned into a classic sprinter’s duel. The small breakaway of the day was picked up well before the finale and the fast guys lined up behind their teammates for the lead-out. Tinkoff-Saxo took to the front on the last 1.5km, where Matti Breschel delivered Peter Sagan in a good position at the 200-meter marker. But Sam Bennett (Bora-Argon 18) timed his sprint well in the wind-exposed conditions and took the stage win on the last 50 meters.


After his first race in the Tinkoff-Saxo jersey, Sagan stated that he was happy with the overall result of the race.


“It was my first race for my team Tinkoff-Saxo and I’m very happy with how the race went – except for my crash on stage 1 of course. I think it’s a good start to the season for me and also for the team in general. We are all very happy for the result Bodnar achieved”, evaluates Peter Sagan, who finished 2nd twice, 4th twice and won the white jersey.


“Actually I’m convinced that we could have won the GC with Bodnar. It was our fault that we didn’t put the hammer down in the final kilometers of stage 5. But we have many important races to come, so I see this is a good start with some promising signs”.



Maciej Bodnar’s 2nd place was the best GC result of the strong Pole’s career and he takes the time to show his appreciation.


“It was absolutely a positive week. We didn’t take the win, but we showed that we’re a strong team. I would like to thank the rest of the squad for their job and effort, as they have worked really hard and consistently for six days. We could perhaps have done something different yesterday, but we didn’t do it in the split second, where the opportunity was there. That’s how it is, but I’m pretty confident that we will have the opportunity to take the win in important races during the season”, says Maciej Bodnar with a smile.


Tinkoff-Saxo’s next race is at Tour of Oman starting on Tuesday the 17th of February. 



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