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"That was the plan - if it was possible - to have one guy in there. Unfortunately, it was me! It was a suicide mission, but hey, sometimes it’s like this," Rast says

Photo: Trek Factory Racing




21.06.2014 @ 19:18 Posted by Emil Axelgaard

With no rider for the GC, Trek went into today's stage of the Tour de Suisse with the plan to go on the attack and Gregory Rast did well to make it into the early break. Not known as a climber, however, the Swiss regretted that he had been the rider to be successful.


Gregory Rast jumped into an early 8-man escape group in the penultimate 219-kilometer stage at the Tour de Suisse. It was a long, arduous journey for the breakaway on a hot day in Switzerland, but it wasn’t until the final 15 kilometers where the true heated action began.


The Omega Pharma-Quick Step team held the leaders to a maximum seven-minute lead before slowly reeling them back to less than two minutes when the serious climbs started, beginning with a category three ascent before the final hors catégorie uphill that topped out 1.8 kilometers from the finish line.


Gregory Rast, a known Classics’ specialist and not notorious for the long, difficult mountain climbs, knew his time in the breakaway was fated, and as the road kicked upwards he was one of the first from the breakaway to succumb.


“The collaboration was good in the break, but some guys were obviously stronger than the others and this caused a little problem," he said. "I felt bad with my back, and I did not even believe one second the breakaway would make it.  I am not sure why my back hurt – it is the same as in Luxembourg when I was pushing a lot of watts. Today was the same, and already at the start I had problems. Once the break settled and we went regular speed it was okay, but at the end again – I had no chance.”


The GC battle began to fire up behind and it was a futile fight by the remnants of the breakaway. The winning attack came from the chasing peloton as Orica GreenEdge rider Johan Esteban Chaves jumped away in the final three kilometers, and took the mountain summit victory. Tony Martin (OPQS) rolled in with a small group 17 seconds later and successfully defended yellow. Third overall, Rui Costa (Lampre-Merida), finished in the same group as Martin and grabbed back significant time to second placed Tom Dumoulin (Giant-Shimano), leaving tomorrow’s stage to decide the final podium.


Andy Schleck was the highest finisher for the team in 32nd place (+2’07") with one day, and one more mountain summit finish remaining. Trek Factory Racing is down to five riders, but despite the stacked odds against them they came out ready to race hard today, explained Gregory Rast.


“We have not showed a lot here, we are not in the GC, so we needed to show something today by being in the breakaway," Rast saud. "That was the plan - if it was possible - to have one guy in there. Unfortunately, it was me! It was a suicide mission, but hey, sometimes it’s like this.  Even if we had 12 minutes by the climb I don’t think I would have made it with these legs!”



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