photo credit @ British Cycling/Twitter
Elia Viviani (TeamSky) took his second stage win in this year’s Tour of Britain, after emerging from a hectic finale – to beat Juan José Lobato (Movistar) in a sprint finish in Kelso today.
Meanwhile, race leader Petr Vakoc crashed heavily just outside the 3 kilometer mark, amidst a messy pileup of riders – subsequently losing his yellow jersey to today’s runner up – Lobato.
The day’s break was initiated by Russ Downing (Cult Energy) and Tyler Farrar (MTN-Qhubeka), only to have the duo joined by Aidis Kruopis (An Post-Chain Reaction), Marcin Bialoblocki (One Pro Cycling), Johnny McEvoy (NFTO) and Matt Cronshaw (Madison-Genesis), to form a six-rider strong lead group.
From there, the breakaway group went on to established a lead of more than four minutes over the peloton.
At one point, Bialoblocki, Farrar and Cronshaw managed to jettison the rest of their breakaway companions, and make their way over the climb of Wilton Hill.
With 34 kilometers remaining, the escapees’ lead had swelled 4:21 over the peloton, while Etixx took to the front, along with Cannnondale-Garmin and Lotto-Soudal to try and mitigate the deficit.
Back up front, Farrar led the breakaway up the final climb of Dingleton in earnest. At that point however, their gap had begun the diminish rapidly.
Indeed, with 18 kilometers to go, their advantage over the peloton was down to 1:55. And, a further 5 kilometers later, another 30 seconds had been cut from their lead.
As the race headed into the final 5 kilometers, chaos struck the peloton, claiming Vakoc as its worst victim, as the Czech rider was seen sitting along the road clutching his side.
Inside the final kilometer, Lotto appeared to be in control with Greipel acting as a leadout man, but the Belgian team was overpowered, as Viviani executed a final surge to seize the stage victory.
photo credit @ Movistar/Twitter
Stage 3 Results
ITA 1 VIVIANI, Elia (SKY) 5:08:18
ESP 2 LOBATO DEL VALLE, Juan Jose (MOVISTAR)
ITA 3 TRENTIN, Matteo (ETIXX – QUICK STEP)
NOR 4 ENGER, Sondre Holst (IAM CYCLING)
BEL 5 DEBUSSCHERE, Jens (LOTTO SOUDAL)
GBR 6 DOULL, Owain (TEAM WIGGINS)
ITA 7 BETTIOL, Alberto (CANNONDALE – GARMIN)
GBR 8 BRIGGS, Graham (JLT CONDOR)
GBR 9 PETERS, Alex (GREAT BRITAIN)
NED 10 POELS, Wouter (SKY)
General Classification after Stage 3
ESP 1 LOBATO DEL VALLE, Juan Jose (MOVISTAR) 13:37:04
NOR 2 BOASSON HAGEN, Edvald (MTN – QHUBEKA) + 10
NED 3 GERTS, Floris (BMC RACING) + 12
NED 4 POELS, Wouter (SKY) + 13
NED 5 VAN BAARLE, Dylan (CANNONDALE – GARMIN)
GBR 6 DOULL, Owain (TEAM WIGGINS) + 14
GBR 7 BRIGGS, Graham (JLT CONDOR)
DEN 8 GULDHAMMER, Rasmus (CULT ENERGY PRO CYCLING)
ITA 9 TRENTIN, Matteo (ETIXX – QUICK STEP) + 18
ESP 10 FERNANDEZ, Ruben (MOVISTAR) + 22
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