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"Kolobnev and Chernetckii showed their good form, but in the end we are here for the sprint finishes where we can play our cards with Kristoff and Porsev," Schmidt says

Photo: Sirotti












16.06.2014 @ 22:24 Posted by Emil Axelgaard

Team Katusha kept their GC riders Sergei Chernetskii and Alexandr Kolobnev well-protected in today's hilly third stage of the Tour de Suisse but the most important stages are still to come. With Alexander Kristoff and Alexander Porsev on the roster, they hope to have an impact on the sprint stages.


The third stage of the 2014 Tour de Suisse saw a sprint from a reduced field of riders on an uphill rise that had the finale splintered into many different groups approaching the line. Team Katusha’s Alexander Kolobnev and Sergei Chernetckii were part of the action near the front. 


“It was good to see that our classification riders were in the front on the last climb," sports director Torsten Schmidt said. "Kolobnev and Chernetckii showed their good form, but in the end we are here for the sprint finishes where we can play our cards with Kristoff and Porsev. We brought the sprint train to Switzerland. We have here strong guys to lead out the sprint.” 


Kolobnev and Chernetckii were in the group that came in at five seconds. 


The 202,9 km stage moderate climbing stage from Sarnen to Heiden saw several breaks go clear throughout the day, with a select group forming on the climb for the finish on dry roads and sunny skies. Many attempts to get away in the final few kilometers resulted in a fast pace for the uphill sprint finish. Peter Sagan (Cannondale) outgunned Michael Albasini (Orica-GreenEdge) by a bike length. Third place went to Sergio Henao of Sky.


Tony Martin (Omega Pharma-QuickStep) maintained his race lead after taking the jersey in the opening time trial. He holds six seconds to Tom Dumoulin and 14-seconds to Sagan. Sergei Cherneckii moved up to 24th position.


Racing continues on Tuesday with stage 4 of the nine-stage Tour de Suisse. The 160 km lumpy course begins in Heiden and ends in Ossingen. 


As the FIFA World Cup in Brazil gets well underway this week, many conversations on the team bus revolve around football. Torsten Schmidt joked about today’s game of his native Germany vs. Portugal: 


“I hope when Portugal loses to Germany tonight that (head sports director) José Azevedo will still like me and not change my race program.”


Team Katusha’s favorite Russia plays on Wednesday.  



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