Küng Carries Yellow Jersey into Tour de Suisse Stage 512. June 2018, Gstaad (SUI) — Road Team
Stefan Küng successfully defended his yellow jersey on stage 4 of the Tour de Suisse which saw the sprinters denied on another rain-soaked stage.
The day’s breakaway was formed easily when six riders broke clear almost as soon as the flag dropped at kilometer 0 and with 189km on the cards, the peloton, led by BMC Racing Team, was happy to let the group go more than six minutes down the road.
With rain falling heavily throughout the stage, BMC Racing Team remained at the front of the bunch out of trouble to protect race leader Stefan Küng and team leader Richie Porte.
The breakaway’s advantage slowly came down in the second half of the stage with the category 3 Saanenmöserstrasse climb providing the main challenge before a descent into the finish in Gstaad.
The breakaway riders started the climb with a one-minute advantage and immediately attacks came from the six riders which saw Chris Jul-Jensen (Mitchelton-SCOTT) and Nansa Peters (AG2R La Mondiale) in the lead over the summit, while behind the high pace in the peloton prevented any riders from going clear.
Despite the peloton closing in on the duo in the final 10km, just over ten seconds behind wiht 5km remaining, Jul-Jensen proved to be too strong and led the race solo with 3km to go as he entered the aerodrome that provided a spectacular finish to stage 4.
The sprinters’ teams tried their best to close the gap but were left to sprint for second place behind Jul-Jensen who hung on to claim the win.
Küng crossed the line safely in the bunch to retain the overall lead, as did Greg Van Avermaet, Porte, and Tejay van Garderen, who remain three seconds behind Küng on the General Classification.
Quotes from the Finish Line
“The rain didn’t make it easier but it was quite an easy start and we were surprised as we expected a bigger fight for the breakaway. Then, the race was fast with strong guys out in front. Luckily, we had some help from other teams to chase it down but I think Michi Schär will need a lot of pasta tonight to recover from today’s effort.”
“Tomorrow is the first time that we go really into the mountains with a summit finish so it will be difficult for me to defend the jersey but I think up until now we can be happy. I won’t let the jersey go without fighting for it.”
“I came as a kid and always looked on ski holidays but I have never ridden tomorrow’s climb by bike because I wasn’t expecting to be in yellow when we hit this stage so, it is also a little bit of new territory for me but we will see how it goes.”
Tour de Suisse
Stage 4 Gansingen > Gstaad (189km)
Top 3: 1. Chris Jul-Jensen (Mitchelton-SCOTT), 2. Michael Matthews (Team Sunweb), 3. Yves Lampaert (Quick-Step Floors).
BMC Racing Team top 3: 11. Greg Van Avermaet, 22. Richie Porte, 23. Stefan Küng