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"Breakaway skills will be very important if we want to achieve stage success in Italy. Sylwester Szmyd has never been a big breakaway rider in his career, so he has to learn that part of cycling."

Photo: Sirotti






20.02.2015 @ 20:11 Posted by Emil Axelgaard

Sylwester Szmyd tried his luck in a breakaway on the first of two mountain stages of Vuelta a Andalucia Ruta del Sol. He spent almost 120 kilometers in the leading group and was reeled in right before the last, very demanding climb.


"We agreed before the stage that Sylwester Szmyd should try to make an early move," sporting director of CCC Sprandi Polkowice Piotr Wadecki said. "We knew that the chances of finishing near the podium would be much higher if we attacked at the beginning. It was no point in trying to confront Froome and Contador because they are out of the peloton’s reach.


"Everything we are doing in the first part of the season is done with Giro d’Italia in the back of our heads and breakaway skills will be very important if we want to achieve stage success in Italy. Sylwester Szmyd has never been a big breakaway rider in his career, so he has to learn that part of cycling."


Before the stage Sylwester Szmyd said that he would test his legs on the stage. He kept his word and attacked early on with 8 other riders – Peio Bilbao (Caja Rural – Seguros RGA), Jeremy Roy (FDJ), Simon Geschke (Team Giant – Alpecin), Christophe Riblon (AG2R La Mondiale), Aleksejs Saramotins (IAM Cycling), Pieter Jacobs (Topsport Vlaanderen – Baloise), Marc De Maar (Team Roompot) i Alessandro Bazzana (UnitedHealthcare).


The bunch didn’t let the gap grow too much and at the maximum point the advantage was reaching 3 minutes. It levelled out at around 2 minutes and was fully erased with 17km to go, at the bottom of the last, very demanding climb. The leader’s team Tinkoff-Saxo took on the responsibility of leading the bunch and nobody was able to break clear.


Alberto Contador finished off the work done by his teammates and reached the top of the Alto de Hazallanas in first place. Christopher Froome (Team Sky) was 2nd (19 seconds back) and Romain Bardet (AG2R La Mondiale) took third. Szmyd was the first one on the top among the CCC Sprandi Polkowice and finished 53rd. Grega Bole lost the points leader classification jersey which was taken over by Contador.



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