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”It's a nice feeling to win the first race. For me and for the team, I'm happy. They believe in me and it’s incredible to have been able to pay them back immediately.”

Photo: Lotto NL-Jumbo

ALEXANDER PORSEV

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BARDIANI CSF FAIZANE

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BOB JUNGELS

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DECEUNINCK - QUICK-STEP

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DYLAN GROENEWEGEN

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EF PRO CYCLING

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ION IZAGIRRE

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KATUSHA ALPECIN

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MATTI BRESCHEL

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MOVISTAR TEAM

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TEAM JUMBO-VISMA

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TEAM SKY

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VOLTA A LA COMUNITAT VALENCIANA

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05.02.2016 @ 20:54 Posted by Emil Axelgaard

Dylan Groenewegen got his WorldTour career off to the best possible start as he won the first sprint he has contested as a LottoNL-Jumbo rider. The Dutchman came out on top in the bunch kick on the third stage of the Volta a la Comunitat Valenciana as he beat Nacer Bouhanni (Cofidis) in a photo finish, with Alexander Porsev (Katusha) completing the podium. Wout Poels (Sky) defended the lead.

 

We have gathered several reactions

 

Focus on sprints and lead-outs pay off for Dylan Groenewegen

Dylan Groenewegen won the third stage of the Volta a la Comunitat Valenciana today. The 22-year-old of Team LottoNL-Jumbo sprinted and in the streets of Alzira to edge out Nacer Bouhanni (Team Cofidis) and Alexander Porsev (Team Katusha). Wout Poels (Sky) remains in control of the overall standings.

 

The stage was mostly flat with a small breakaway lingering out front, but never far from the clutches of the peloton. Just before the final 10 kilometres, the peloton caught the break and the teams prepared for a sprint. Team LottoNL-Jumbo focused its entire winter on its sprint train, which is bearing fruit already.

 

"What you feed grows," sports director Merijn Zeeman said to the LottoNL-Jumbo website. "We are already working for some time with the sprint train and this is a good start. We took the initiative at a certain point to pull in the break and the other teams came and worked with us in the lead. In the final, it was hectic but it mostly ran well. We can learn a lot from this and evaluate it, but for now we’ll enjoy the victory. "

 

The stage started with a third category mountain, which required saving as much energy as possible. At 30 kilometres from the finish, the riders of Team LottoNL-Jumbo protected Dylan Groenewegen from the wind for the final.

 

"The guys helped me to a fantastic day," Groenewegen said after his victory. "Paul [Martens], Steven [Lammertink], Tom [Leezer], Alexey [Vermeulen], Koen [Bouwman], Victor [Campenaerts], Dennis [van Winden]… they were fantastic. It feels great to win in the first sprint of the season and repay the team’s confidence. "

 

The final was hectic but Team LottoNL-Jumbo remained positioned and dropped off Dylan well in the last kilometre.

 

"I was positioned well and in the last 500 metres, I took the wheel of Bouhanni," Groenewegen continued. "He still had two of his men in front of him. I noticed when he went for the sprint that I could pass but I waited. At the very end, I came up and over for the victory – one for me and the team.”

 

"I did not expect to win , but the team believed in me and took the situation in hand,” he told Spaziociclismo. “The last kilometers were very nervous and in the end the wind was coming from the right. I took the wheel and Bouhanni I beat him. It worked out perfectly.

 

”It's a nice feeling to win the first race. For me and for the team, I'm happy. They believe in me and it’s incredible to have been able to pay them back immediately.”

 

Alexandr Porsev takes first 2016 podium for Katusha

With Team Katusha riders active all week in the 67th Volta a la Comunitat Valenciana, it was time for a podium finish in Friday’s stage 3 with Aleksandr Porsev taking part in the final sprint to earn third place after 173,5 km of racing.

 

“I am really happy with this result and my podium place. The sprint was not easy at all, but I am grateful to my team. The guys helped me a lot and brought me to a good position. I think today we did all we could. In the last km I had to fight for position in front and maybe I ended up too much in the wind. But it was a good sprint for me. We did two very good training camps with our classics group so already in Calpe I felt in strong form. I felt like I could get some nice results in my very first race. This gives me motivation to continue in this way,” said Aleksandr Porsev.

 

Bob Jungels after missing turn: I could have won the stage

Bob Jungels attacked from the bunch and got a handful of seconds, but was sent in the wrong direction by the race motorbike with 1200 meters to go. As a result, he lost his advantage, but fortunately came back quick in the main group and kept his 5th place in the general classification.

 

"It's a pity, because I went flat out in that attack and had a good gap. I honestly I think I would have won the race. Unfortunately, a motorbike in front of me went straight, instead of making the right corner and I followed it. That road should have been closed, not open, but there's nothing I can do now to change things. Despite of that, I remain upbeat for the rest of the week", said the Luxembourg champion minutes after arriving at the team bus.

 

Tom Boonen gains confidence from good sprint in Valencia

while Tom Boonen was fourth at the finish in Alzira, a town visited by the race for the first time in 9 years. The 2005 world champion, riding his first event of the season in Spain, made an analysis of the sprint:

 

"It was a chaotic finale. In the last meters I hesitated a bit if I should take Bouhanni's wheel or go on the right. I went with the latter, but maybe I should have chosen the left side. But that's sprinting sometimes. Important thing is that I feel good, and that's why this morning we decided that I will try something in the sprint. As I said, I just went with my instinct and I'm satisfied with the outcome, especially considering this was my first sprint in a long time."

 

Nicola Ruffoni takes first top 10 for Bardiani

It was the first top ten for Bardiani-CSF in 2016. Today in the third stage of Volta a la Comunitat Valenciana, Nicola Ruffoni took eighth place in the bunch sprint won by Dutch Greonewegen (LottoNL).

 

After the first two days, the opening ITT around Benicassim (23rd place for Colbrelli) and yesterday’s summit finish (Barbin, 38th, top finisher at 27”), the #GreenTeam was one of the most active team in the bunch. Enrico Barbin rode in the breakaway for 141km with other five riders, caught by the peloton 12 km from the finish. Then the team worked to prepare the sprint for Ruffoni.

 

Filippo Fortin confirms sprinting potential in Valencia

It has been a reat start of the season for Filippo Fortin and for GM Europa Ovini: in the third stage of the Volta a la Comunitat Valenciana, the Venetian rider finished 9th

 

“I think I’m in good condition, although I can improve further,” said Filippo Fortin. “It is never easy to fight with the best in the world, but the most important thing is that at the Challenge Mallorca I had a good feeling. I hope I can still improve and to try to have my say even in the next stages here in Valencia. ”

 

Movistar leaders stay safe in Valencia crosswind

Happiness in Dubai was followed by tranquility at Alzira's finish, as Dylan Groenewegen (TLJ) took the sprint win on stage three of the Volta a la Comunitat Valenciana while the Movistar Team stayed always focused and unscathed, with Arcas, Ventoso and Erviti taking care of the three main GC guys for the group directed by Jaimerena and Laguía: Jesús Herrada, Javi Moreno and Ion Izagirre.

 

Izagirre came home in 12th as best of the Blues in a day with no changes overall - the three Movistars remain in 4th, 6th and 8th - prelude of tomorrow's decisive stage four. The steep Xorret de Catí (Cat-1), preceded by Canalí (Cat-2) and followed by a short, tortuous descent, will complete a 141km journey starting at Orihuela.

 

Matti Breschel comes up short in first sprint for Cannondale

The third stage of Volta Valenciana ended in a bunch sprint. Matti Breschel posted the top result for Cannondale in 13th place.

 

”It was very much predictable with a bunch sprint today,” sports director Johnny Weltz said. “We gave Matti the chance to see if he could surprise the real sprinters, but that didn't happen. For the other guys it was to get through the day without any incident with a focus on tomorrow, where will go for a stage win. Jack [Bauer] is doing well and each day better as his crash from last year steps more and more in the background."

 

Confident Wout Poels: I love the very steep climb

Wout Poels held firm in the overall lead at the Volta a la Comunitat Valenciana after a sprint finish decided stage three.

 

Team Sky placed numbers around the Dutchman to enable him to retain his 15 second advantage at the top of the standings following a fast finish into Alzira.

 

Vasil Kiryienka had paced Team Sky into the final 10km to keep the pace high and Poels out of trouble as more sprinters' teams came to the fore. Poels remained cool as he held his ground up front, crossing the line safely in the bunch.

 

The race looks likely to be decided on Saturday with a tough day of climbing on the road to Xorret del Cati.

 

"It was a fast day, but the team did a great job to make everything easier,” Poels told Cyclingpro.net. “ The sensations are good  and we now look to tomorrow. It will be very tough but I love the very steep climbs and I look forward to seeing what I can do.  I will try to defend the jersey and bring it home.”

 

"I am in the second year with Sky and it is very nice to be the leader of the best team in the world. It is a great feeling.”

 

Diego Rosa stays safe in Valencia crosswind

Diego Rosa is still third overall,

 

“It has been a very nervous stage today here at the Valenciana,” said Diego Rosa after the finish. “There was not much wind but the bunch was quite tense and we kept the maximum attention to not risk anything. As decided in the morning meeting, we kept the front positions in the bunch until the end.”

 

“Tomorrow’s final seems quite difficult on the maps. Let’s see how the race will develop,” concluded Rosa.

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