Dumoulin fifth in mountain time trial Tour de Suisse
Tom Dumoulin has finished fifth in the seventh stage of the Tour de Suisse. In t...
Sepp Kuss and Steven Kruijswijk have both finished in the top ten of the day’s results in the sixth stage of the Critérium du Dauphiné. On the mountainous finish a sprint between the classification riders decided the day's victory. The American became sixth, while Kruijswijk completed the top ten.
The peloton averaged more than 50 kilometres per hour in the first phase of the race. A group of fourteen riders formed the breakaway. The escapees were not given more than a three minutes lead. It was partly thanks to Team Jumbo-Visma that the majority of the breakaway riders were caught before the final two climbs. Tony Martin settled in at the head of the bunch and developed a high pace. With five kilometres to go, Lawson Craddock was the last escapee to see the peloton race past him.
After Robert Gesink and Jonas Vingegaard had done their bit, it was up to Kuss and Kruijswijk to keep the black and yellow in the front line. Both riders of Team Jumbo-Visma made a few pinpricks, but it was not possible to get away from the group of favourites. Tao Geoghegan Hart was the first rider to attack for a final shot. Kruijswijk and Kuss reacted, but others fought for the win. Through his role in the foreground, Kruijswijk gained a few places in the general classification. The Dutchman is now ninth.
"It is difficult to say exactly what the proportions are, because we will only head to the real high mountains tomorrow."
Kuss saw no possibility to get away from the group of classification riders due to the high speed in the final stage. “The speed was high all day long. The pace was high on the final climb as well. It was impossible to jump away from the group. It was very obvious that it would end in a sprint. Nevertheless, we can look back with satisfaction on today’s stage. It is difficult to say exactly what the proportions are, because we will only head to the real high mountains tomorrow.”
"We were able to warm up well for the mountains that are scheduled for tomorrow and Sunday."
Kruijswijk shared his teammate’s opinion. “We have shown ourselves a number of times today. If we would ride around here with bad legs, we would not be in front. We have come through today’s stage well. We were able to warm up well for the mountains that are scheduled for tomorrow and Sunday.”
"The riders have shown that they are close to a good level."
“We gained a bit of confidence again today”, sports director Grischa Niermann explained. The German saw his team perform well across the board. “Steven and Sepp rode well in the front group in the finale. We knew that the arrival would not really be their cup of tea. Robert, Jonas and Tony also rode a strong race. They have shown that they are close to a good level. That gives the riders morale and we can always use that in the run-up to the Tour de France. These are the little pieces that make us better every time.”