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"The course of the stage was difficult but I was happy about it this morning. I think that I did not finish fourth in the Amstel Gold Race by chance. Today it was a bit like a small Amstel Gold Race. I was confident and I knew the team...

Photo: Sirotti


04.06.2016 @ 20:19 Posted by Emil Axelgaard

Two days after winning the prologue, Bryan Coquard (Direct Energie) continued his dream season by adding the queen stage at the Boucles de la Mayenne to his growing palmares. After his team had worked hard to catch a very strong front trio, he held off Maxime Vantomme (Roubaix) and Davide Vigano (Androni) in the final dash to the line and so extended his overall lead on the eve of the final stage.


We have gathered a few reactions.


Bryan Coquard: I did not finish fourth at Amstel Gold Race by chance

"The course of the stage was difficult but I was happy about it this morning,” Bryan Coquard told Directvelo. “I think that I did not finish fourth in the Amstel Gold Race by chance. Today it was a bit like a small Amstel Gold Race. I was confident and I knew the team was solid.


“It is a collective victory. Since yesterday, my teammates have been on the front all day, with a special mention for Yo (Yoann Gene) and Pipich (Alexandre Pichot) who rode all day. Today, Adrien (Petit) was not feeling very well, but he still worked. He was really super strong.


“I think it's the 19th victory of the season for Direct Energie. Soon the 20th! Yesterday I was asked a lot why I did not win. But in a sprint, we cannot make miracles if we are out of position or have a problem. You cannot always win. Yesterday I lost the wheels of my teammates. It was my fault, even though I could not pass the other riders.  


“Today, 30 kilometers from the finish, I wanted to ride. I lacked composure, but Angelo (Tulik) showed me the right path. We discussed. He said "shit, stop your bullshit!" It is important to have teammates who are also friends. Mates like Angelo do not hesitate to say ''shut up'' if necessary.


“In the end, I wanted to attack 2.5 kilometers from the finish if we had not caught the break. The goal was primarily to keep the jersey, so I did not lose time on these riders. The stage win is a bonus."


U23 world champion shows form at Boucles de la Mayenne

U23 world champion Kevin Ledanois (Fortuneo Vital Concept) was in the break.


"The day went well for me,” he told Directvelo. “We escaped on the first climb with Mathieu Van Der Poel who attacked during the KOM sprint. Personally, I did not do too much early on, even though I still did my share of work like the others. I had good sensations.


“In the end, I tried everything with Mathieu Van Der Poel and Yann Guyot. Frankly, it was very good and we tried our luck with a very good agreement. We did not miss much in the last two kilomtres because if we had got to the top of the last little climb with 10 seconds, I think we would have stayed away. So it's frustrating.


“What is unfortunate is that the climbs were quite far from the final circuit. Otherwise, we could really make a fight in the final. It is frustrating for puncheurs. It benefited Bryan (Coquard) who will win the GC which is good for him."



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