25th Tour of Slovenia – Groenewegen was lost, but found his way to victory pubblicato il 14/06/2018

Press release, 14th June 2018

25th Tour of Slovenia – Groenewegen was lost, but found his way to victory #video #results
Rogaška Slatina, Slovenia – World Tour teams and their star sprinters didn’t allow any surprises on the second day of the 25th edition of Tour of Slovenia and what was the last chance for sprinters. Dutch Dylan Groenewegen (LottoNL-Jumbo) finished the day victorious, Australian Benjamin Hill (Ljubljana Gusto Xaurum) is the new race leader.

Almost 153 kilometers long stage started in Maribor, Slovenia’s second largest city, again with attacks right away from the start. Breakaway was formed quickly, in just couple of kilometers, again thanks to Australian Benjamin Hill (Ljubljana Gusto Xaurum) who is apparently feeling very strong on the roads of Slovenia, home of his continental team. Slovenian Gašper Katrašnik (Adria Mobil Cycling) and Czech Vojtěch Hačecky (Elkov Author Cycling Team) joined him this time around, and the trio managed to pull away for almost five minutes at one point. Hill and Katrašnik took all of the intermediate and sole mountain finish, with Hill obviously playing a very smart game and getting enough time beneficiations for the green jersey of the overall leader on the race.

Benjamin Hill: “We had the plan with four goals for the race: one get in the brake, two get at least three seconds but as many as possible would be better, three don't get a time gap at the finish and four cross our fingers for the right person to win the race. I kept ticking those boxes as we went along the race and everything fell in the place nicely. I don't intend on holding either of the jerseys all the way to the finish so just to have one at the moment is really special. So I am over the moon.”

Breakaway riders decided on the overall standings, but they were mere side actors in the fight for stage victory in Rogaška Slatina. Strongest teams had their sprinters lined up for the last kilometer, although not everything went by plan. Caleb Ewan (Mitchelton-Scott) was unlucky again, crashing on the descent from Planina pri Sevnici. But he was back on his bike soon and was later also in the front line of the sprint. Mark Cavendish (Dimension Data) had a flat 16 kilometers till the finish, he had to wait for his mechanic and changed the wheel. He also managed to get back in the front.

Dutch Dylan Groenewegen (LottoNL-Jumbo) was left without his teammates and was “lost” in the peloton, but found his way to the front and crossed the line with quite a significant gap ahead of Matteo Pelucchi (BORA hansgrohe) and Ewan. Winner of the first stage Simone Consonni (UAE Team Emirates) was fourth, British favorite Mark Cavendish (Dimension Data) was sixth.

Dylan Groenewegen: “I felt very good today. I am really happy with my legs, the legs are good and that is really important for the Tour de France. It was really hectic in the last 10 kilometers. I lost my team in the last 3 kilometers and my team lost me, so I did it my own way and I think it was good. I’m satisfied with my preparation for the Tour. Yesterday there was a crash so I couldn't sprint, but today I had a new chance and the win is always good.”

Best Slovenian was Rok Korošec (My Bike – Stevens) in ninth place, this is what he had to say after the stage: “It might have been more relaxed than yesterday. Big teams had their trains for the sprinters, but I think our team did very good as well and we took the best we could. There is a little bit of bitterness, as I see that I could also do better with the better support of the train. I’m happy with this result and I could only wish for more stages like this.”

Hill is now in green and blue (KOM) jersey, Pelucchi leads in the sprint classification. Slovenian Jon Božič (Adria Mobil Cycling) is in white jersey of the best young rider on the race.

Two very hard stages are now ahead of us, Friday’s 176 kilometers long stage from Slovenske Konjice to Celje will be very interesting, especially the last 20 kilometers with 2nd category climb and uphill finish on the Old castle in Celje.

Full results
Official website www.tourofslovenia.si
Video highlights (YouTube)

#TourOfSlovenia #FightForGreen

Photos by Sportida


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