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Spanish champion is one of three survivors from an 13-rider breakaway and beats Vichot and Vorganov in the sprint to take the stage win and move into second on GC while Voeckler finishes in the bunch to seal his overall win

Photo: Sirotti

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JESUS HERRADA

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MOVISTAR TEAM

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THOMAS VOECKLER

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TOUR DU POITOU-CHARENTES

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30.08.2013 @ 16:45 Posted by Simon Knudstrup

Jesus Herrada (Movistar) took a fantastic win in the final stage of the Tour du Poitou-Charentes when he beat fellow escapees Arthur Vichot (FDJ) and Eduard Vorganov (Katusha) in a three-rider sprint. Thomas Voeckler used his Europcar team to reduce the gap sufficiently to secure the overall win while Herrada's time gains were enough to move him into 2nd on GC.

 

When Jesus Herrada won the Spanish road race championships earlier this year, he gave glimpses of his big talent. Today he once again underlined his potential when he won the fifth and final stage of the Tour du Poitou-Charentes.

 

Together with French champion Arthur Vichot (FDJ), the Spaniard was the driving force in an 13-rider breakaway that had gone clear on the hilly route. The Europcar team of race leader Thomas Voeckler did their best to reel in the break as Herrada had started the day in 13th on GC, only 58 seconds behind the race leader.

 

The Movistar rider refused to give up and made an attack on the final climb inside the final 10km of the race. Only Vichot and Eduard Vorganov could match his speed and those three riders held the peloton at bay all the way to the finish.

 

Herrada proved that he also has a fast sprint when he beat Vichot - who is no bad sprinter - to take the stage win. 16 seconds late Nacer Bouhanni (FDJ) beat Davide Appollonio (Ag2r) in the peloton's sprint but missed out on his 4th stage win of the race.

 

Voeckler limited his losses sufficiently to take the overall win while Herrada's gains were enough to propel him into 2nd. Mikhail Ignatiev (Katusha) completed the podium while Arnaud Gerard (Bretagne) lost his podium spot on the final day of racing.

 

Many of the riders will line up when racing in France continues on Sunday with the WorldTour GP Ouest France-Plouay. Herrada and Voeckler will both be in attendance.

 

Starting at 14.45 CEST you can follow that race live on CyclingQuotes.com/live.

 

An aggressive French champion

The 192,2km stage was mostly flat but contained a number of nasty climbers that were generally deemed to be too difficult for the pure sprinters. In the finale, the riders had to climb a 15% hill three times and it was expected to have a big impact on the race.

 

French champion Vichot had big plans for today and alongside Dmitri Le Boulch (BigMat), he was the first rider to get a noticeable gap. That move didn't last though and he was reeled in by the peloton.

 

A 13-rider group goes clear

Vichot refused to give up and now he made it into a big 13-rider group. Joining forces with Herrada, Vorganov, Maxim Belkov (Katusha), Paul Poux (Sojasun), Jean-Luc Delpech (Bretagne), Mattia Pozzo (Vini Fantini), Morgan Kneisky (Roubaix), Julien Fouchard (Cofidis), Thomas Rostollan (La Pomme), Marco Minaard (Rabobank), Tom David (Crelan) and Patrick Schelling (IAM), he was allowed to build up a gap of 2.30.

 

Europcar assumed its position on the front of the peloton and kept the gap stable for most of the day. With 50km to go, the French team started to accelerated and brought the advantage down to 1.30.

 

A battle between two groups

However, the breakaway responded and managed to rebuild their to 2 minutes. The two groups were involved in a close fight and appeared to be rather equally matched.

 

The first time up the final climb, Europcar put down the hammer and reduced the gap to 50 seconds. However, the breakaway once again responded and stabilized the gap at around that mark until the second passage of the climb.

 

The break splits up

Just before they hit the bottom, Pozzo punctured out of the breakaway while Fouchard and Rostollan and later also Poux and Schelling fell off the pace on the steep slopes. Those four riders were all reeled in by the peloton in which Europcar was now assisted by Bretagne, the French team trying to defend Gerard's podium spot.

 

Orica-GreenEDGE also added firepower to the chase but the gap to the leaders remained stable at around 40 seconds. The final time up the climb, Herrada attacked and only Vichot and Vorganov could respond.

 

A pursuit

From there, the stage evolved into a pursuit between the front trio, the chasers and the peloton which was now led by IAM. The main group managed to catch the pursuit group but they never saw Herrada, Vichot and Vorganov again.

 

Those three riders decided the stage win in a sprint and Herrada emerged as the fastest. Voeckler limited his losses to just 16 seconds and that allowed the Frenchman to take his second overall win in the French stage race.

 

Result:

1. Jesus Herrada 4.21.17

2. Arthur Vichot

3. Eduard Vorganov

4. Nacer Bouhanni +0.16

5. Davide Appollonio

6. Evaldas Siskevicius

7. Omar Bertazzo

8. Michael Delage

9. Daniele Colli

10. Francisco Ventoso

 

General classification:

1. Thomas Voeckler 16.19.31

2. Jesus Herrada +0.23

3. Mikhail Ignatiev +0.26

4. Arnaud Gerard +0.37

5. Gustav Erik Larsson

6. Luke Durbridge +0.40

7. Maxime Vantomme +0.50

8. Nacer Bouhanni +0.54

9. Eduardo Sepulveda

10. Simon Spilak +0.55

 

Points classification:

1. Nacer Bouhanni 89

2. Davide Appollonio 43

3. Jesus Herrada 42

4. Maxime Vantomme 40

5. Omar Bertazzo 31

 

Mountains classification:

1. Dimitri Le Boulch 16

2. Julien Duval 10

3. Morgan Kneisky 10

4. Patrick Schelling 9

5. Flavien Dassonville 8

 

Youth classification:

1. Jesus Herrada 16.19.54

2. Luke Durbridge +0.17

3. Nacer Bouhanni +0.31

4. Eduardo Sepulveda

5. Yoann Paillot +0.39

 

Teams classification:

1. Katusha 49.00.33

2. Movistar +0.25

3. Bretagne +0.30

4. IAM +1.13

5. FDJ +1.15

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