Breakaway Tests Peloton before Bunch Sprint on Stage 6 in Britain8. September 2017, Aldeburgh (GBR) — Road Team
The breakaway threatened to upset the sprinters’ teams at the OVO Energy Tour of Britain today, but after a fast and furious run into the line, the race was back together with Caleb Ewan (ORICA-Scott) taking the day’s honors.
It was a fast and hectic start to stage 6 in Britain with heavy rain adding to the early difficulty and the peloton setting a fierce tempo as a flurry of attacks were quickly pulled back over the opening 10km of racing before seven riders were eventually given the freedom to go clear.
The breakaway quickly extended an advantage of over three minutes, but with the main bunch being led by race leader, Lars Boom’s Team LottoNL-Jumbo, the gap was quickly brought down to a manageable margin and was hovering around two minutes after 50km, of the 183.2km course.
With 60km to go, the leaders had pushed on at the front of the race and drawn their advantage out to just over the three-minute mark and, as a result, a reaction from the peloton saw the gap begin to fall.
However, approaching the final 20km of the day, the peloton was still trailing by 1’30” but, with teams eyeing another bunch sprint in Aldeburgh, a final determined chase began. With the peloton strung out in single file, the breakaway was pulled to within one minute before, with just 3km to go, the race was pulled back together.
With the stage set for a fast finale, the battle for position began as teams looked to organize their lead outs going under the flamme rouge before eventually, it was Caleb Ewan (ORICA-Scott) who took the stage win after launching his sprint early.
Floris Gerts was in the mix when the sprint was launched and was BMC Racing Team’s best-placed rider, crossing the line 14th while Stefan Küng finished safely behind to maintain his fourth place on the General Classification, 10 seconds behind Boom, heading into tomorrow’s penultimate stage.
Inside the Race Car with Sports Director, Valerio Piva:
"It was wet all day, and with the breakaway clear, the sprinters' teams alongside LottoNL-Jumbo controlled the race all day, and it was clear that we were heading towards another bunch sprint. We had a plan to try something in the final kilometer to move with Stefan Küng, but it was impossible. The guys were up there at the front, but it was just too crazy. We defended our position today, and tomorrow is a different sort of finish, so maybe we can try something again. Finishing on the podium is our objective now plus we are looking for a stage win, but it is difficult here without a pure sprinter."
OVO Energy Tour of Britain
Stage 6: Newmarket to Aldeburgh, 183.2km
Top 3: 1. Caleb Ewan (ORICA-Scott) 2. Fernando Gaviria (Quick-Step Floors) 3. Dylan Groenewegen (Team LottoNL-Jumbo)
BMC Racing Team Top 3: 14. Floris Gerts 29. Stefan Küng 33. Silvan Dillier