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“Today went quite well, although it sucked that I had a puncture at the foot of the Plateau de Beille. It was a bad moment. I took another bike, I started riding to the top as if it was a time trial."

Photo: LottoNL-Jumbo

BRAM TANKINK

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NEWS

ROBERT GESINK

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NEWS

SEP VANMARCKE

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NEWS

TEAM JUMBO-VISMA

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TOUR DE FRANCE

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16.07.2015 @ 21:57 Posted by Emil Axelgaard

Robert Gesink moved up a spot in the Tour de France on Thursday despite bad luck on Plateau de Beille. The leader of Team LottoNL-Jumbo finished 18th on top of the giant in the Pyrenees and lost one minute on the yellow jersey group, but holds the seventh overall after overtaking Tony Gallopin (Lotto-Soudal). 

 

Joaquím Rodriguez (Katusha) won the 195-kilometre stage, which started in Lannemezan. The Spaniard was part of an early flight.

Robert Gesink

 

“Today went quite well, although it sucked that I had a puncture at the foot of the Plateau de Beille,” Gesink said. “It was a bad moment. I took another bike, I started riding to the top as if it was a time trial. Thanks to the adrenaline, I almost made it back to the yellow jersey group. I could see them all the way up, but unfortunately I couldn’t close the gap.”

 

Gesink was happy about his performance.

 

“I was really strong, it was another good day. It was a shame that I punctured.”
 

Sep Vanmarcke was one of the riders in the leading group with Rodriguez. The Belgian started the ascent to Plateau de Beille as race leader after he managed to create a gap together with Michal Kwiatkowski (Etixx-Quickstep). 

 

“With the team, we had agreed that I would attack so that I could help Robert in the final,” Vanmarcke said after crossing the line in 30th at 12’38”. “It went pretty good, it wasn’t until the final climb that I was caught. I secretly hoped for a top ten, but the climb was too steep for someone with my weight. The last ten kilometres were hard. I’m glad it’s over now, although I amused myself today. I needed this, after last week’s bad luck.”

 

Bam Tankink moved up to the front of the peloton when Plateau de Beille was approaching and made sure that Gesink started the climb from a good position. Eventually, he placed 61st, more than 20 minutes behind Rodriguez.

 

“On the last climb it started to pour. It was very cold. We picked up the pace to warm ourselves up. It is too bad that Robert lost time, but it’s better that it happened because of a puncture than because of a bad day.”

 

Nico Verhoeven was pleased with Sep Vanmarcke’s performance.

 

“It was a good move. He even attacked from the break. Sep had a hard time after his bad luck in the cobbled stage, but today he confirmed that he could do his thing in other type of stages. If there would have been a battle on the penultimate climb between the GC riders, Sep could have been important for Robert in the valley, but that was not the case. On the way to Plateau de Beille, the pace was so high that he could not really do anything.”

 

Verhoeven thinks an attacker has another chance of success on Friday.

 

“It will be difficult for the sprinters’ teams to keep a break in check. Tinkoff-Saxo of course has Sagan, but they also have GC ambitions with Contador. Besides that, they have only seven riders left.”

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