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“When I feel good I want to win. My teammates were working, Jesper is good and pushed a really hard tempo. Then on the last two kilometres I was a little bit asleep when Aru attacked. Afterwards I tried to attack and catch him."

Photo: Tinkoff-Saxo / BettiniPhoto






28.08.2015 @ 23:07 Posted by Emil Axelgaard

Tinkoff-Saxo’s team leader Rafal Majka placed 5th on the mountain stage to La Alpujarra after putting in an acceleration on the last section of the final climb. Having benefitted from a strong team effort that was finished off by tenacious work from Jesper Hansen, Majka took time on several rivals.

As Bert-Jan Lindeman took the stage win from the breakaway, Rafal Majka was powering off at the front in order to bridge a gap to Fabio Aru on the dying meters. Majka took 5th place, 7 seconds off Aru with the remaining favorites just behind, while others were trailing further back.

“It was a positive day and I think we did a good job. The team worked very hard to position me perfectly at the bottom of the last climb. Movistar pulled hard at the front of the peloton on the climb and then Jesper Hansen also worked hard at the front of the GC group to set the pace. It was too late to bridge the gap with the breakaway but I finished with the main GC group.”, comments Rafal Majka, who advances to 13th in the general classification, 1’29” off Esteban Chaves.


“When I feel good I want to win. My teammates were working, Jesper is good and pushed a really hard tempo. Then on the last two kilometres I was a little bit asleep when Aru attacked. Afterwards I tried to attack and catch him.


"I'm happy with the way my team-mates set me up. I tried to attack in the last 1.5 km but Aru was really impressive when he attacked. I am really good. I'm happy to finish with the strongest guys. At the moment I feel good. But my team director told me to wait for the last week as the Vuelta is long and the last week is the most important.


"I lost a few seconds but not too much. It’s a long Vuelta, I feel good, I have a really strong team here, they support me 100 per cent. In the last week we will see who is more strong."

Young climber Jesper Hansen put in an impressive performance by pulling hard for his captain at the front of the favorite’s group going into the final kilometers on La Alpujarra. 

“Rafal and I were well positioned in the last climb and when Movistar stopped pulling, I worked to help him in the last five kilometers. I felt in great shape and I think we had very good day ”, tells Jesper Hansen.

Stage 7 of Vuelta a España took the riders 191.1km from Jódar to the category 1 climb of La Alpujarra on the slopes of the Sierra Nevada ridge. Tristan Hoffman, Tinkoff-Saxo sports director, notes that he’s pleased with the outcome of the day and the signs showed by the key team riders for the mountains.

“Rafal was super today. He felt really good and he has been saying that he senses that he is getting better day by day. He made a move in the finale just after Aru attacked and he kept up the pace to the finish line despite the fact that the group behind managed to make contact on the very last meters. Also Jesper Hansen did a fantastic job and surprised everybody by sitting with the last 15-18 guys, while pulling at the front to help Rafal. Paulinho was also there for a long time but, unfortunately, Poljanski had a flat tire. Other than that, we once again saw Bennati, Brutt and Bodnar positioning Rafal nicely before the final climb”, explains Tristan Hoffman before adding about the days to come:

“We now have two stages, where the focus is back on Sagan. Of course, we will have to stay attentive for Rafal and we also realize that it will be difficult to get the win with Peter, as the stages are very tough. We have hard but shorter climbs on both stages, but we want to try. We then have a rest day and afterwards we’re back in the mountains in Andorra, where we will try to move Rafal up in the GC”.



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