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Nikolay put me directly on the wheel of Greipel but on the final kilometer, two Trek-riders forced their way in between so I had to move around them in the sprint," Mørkøv says

Photo: Sirotti




05.06.2014 @ 18:02 Posted by Emil Axelgaard

Yesterday Michael Mørkøv proved that he is great condition as he continues to fight for a spot on the Tour de France roster, finishing in the top 10 in the prologue of the Tour de Luxembourg. Today he did even better when only André Greipel was faster than the Danish champion in the bunch sprint in the first stage.


After yesterday’s prologue, Tinkoff-Saxo had Manuele Boaro and Michael Mørkøvin the top-10 at the start of today’s 172 kilometer long first stage of Tour of Luxembourg. As the finale was rather bumpy, both riders were challenged in order to stay in the top of the GC.
Three riders formed the long-lasting breakaway and Trek Factory Racing were on the chase. Eventually, Lotto-Belisol joined them in the front of the pack to make sure the front trio was swept up and with 20 kilometers to go, the sprinter teams were in total control of things.
With 5 kilometers to go, the breakaway was neutralized and Tinkoff-Saxo’s Matti Breschel launched a fierce counter-attack but was caught with less than 2 kilometers to go.
In the inevitable bunch sprint, Lotto-Belisol’s hard work paid off as Andre Greipel sprinted his way to the stage victory.
But Tinkoff-Saxo’s Michael Mørkøv finished second in the furious gallop:
“The boys did a great stage and they worked beautifully together throughout the day," sports director Fabrizio Guidi said. "In the finale, Matti took a chance and jumped up the road but was caught about 1.5 kilometers to go.


"Meanwhile, Michael was supported and put on Greipel’s back wheel and finished second. It’s not a win but it’s a pretty cool result finishing second behind a guy like Greipel. We have an excellent team here and I expect more of these kind of results in the stages to come."

Mørkøv moved up to fourth overall while the leader of the race, Danny Van Poppel (Trek Factory Cycling) defended the jersey by finishing third.


Michael Mørkøv comments:


“The plan was that Matti would have his own chance in the finale and he made a good effort trying to surprise the sprinter teams. At the same time, the rest of the guys supported me excellently in the last ten kilometers setting me up for the sprint. Nikolay put me directly on the wheel of Greipel but on the final kilometer, two Trek-riders forced their way in between so I had to move around them in the sprint. It would have been a great experience to have a man’o'man against him to see how it would work out.


"I feel strong and I’ve been training hard and been looking forward to this race to measure my condition and I think it looks promising in terms of this race and the coming challenges."



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