Rafal Majka claimed stage 5 of this year’s Tour of Poland today, after beating Movistar’s Beñat Intxausti and Ion Izagirre in a summit finish atop Strbs Pleso.
Today’s victory not only netted the Polish rider the stage win, but also wrested the leader’s jersey from the shoulders of Petr Vakoc – to take over the race lead.
Today’s first mountainous stage, saw an eight-man breakaway group containing such riders as Fabio Felline (Trek Factory Racing), Matteo Bono (Lampre-Merida), Sebastian Lander (BMC Racing) and Jimmy Engoulvent (Team Europcar), get underway earlier on.
The breakaway group was later joined by Marco Haller (Katusha), Gediminas Bagdonas (Ag2r-La Mondiale), Pawel Bernas (Poland) and King of the Mountains Maciej Paterski (CCC Polsat Polkowice). And, from there, they succeeded in establishing a modest advantage over the peloton.
However, as the peloton started to move in, Paterski and Lander decided to attack their breakaway companions, and attempt to rider clear.
With the breakaway splintered, Christian Meier (Orica-GreenEDGE) emerged from the peloton to successfully chase down the leaders and ride clear on his won – with Adriano Malori (Movistar) and Bob Jungels (Trek Factory Racing) not far behind him.
Meanwhile, Garmin-Sharp continued to set a fast pace back in the peloton, with hopes of moving their man, Ryder Hesjedal up to the front, while at the same time swallowing up the remaining members of the chase.
From there, some short-lived attacks off the front occurred from the likes of Kanstantin Siutsou (Team Sky) and Ilnur Zakarin (RusVelo). However, the peloton quickly nullified their attempts, while Hesjedal again moved his way up to the front – with Pieter Weening on his wheel.
Unfortunately, for the race leader, Petr Vakoc, the effects of the high pace, proved to be too much for him, as he began to fall of the pace.
Weening as the first rider to pass under the flamme rouge. However, with the steep gradients now starting to tax the Dutch rider, he was finally brought back into the fold, as Benat Inxausti (Movistar) caught and passed him on the front.
As Intxausti and Gianluca Brambilla (Omega Pharma-Quickstep) joined in, Majka started to dig deep. And, while riding in the slipstream of Warren Barguil (Giant-Shimano), the Polish rider timed his attack to perfection to catch and surpass his rivals and clinch the stage win.
Meanwhile, all eyes turned to Vakoc who launched a furious attack from behind during the final kilometer, in hopes of retaining his race lead. However, the clock ultimately ruled against him by the narrowest of margins, thus awarding Majka the gold jersey.
Stage 5 Results
POL 1 MAJKA, Rafal (TINKOFF-SAXO) 4:30:38 ESP 2 INTXAUSTI ELORRIAGA, Benat (MOVISTAR) ESP 3 IZAGUIRRE INSAUSTI, Jon (MOVISTAR) ITA 4 BRAMBILLA, Gianluca (OMEGA PHARMA – QUICK-STEP) FRA 5 BARGUIL, Warren (GIANT-SHIMANO) ESP 6 SANCHEZ GONZALEZ, Samuel (BMC RACING) ITA 7 FORMOLO, Davide (CANNONDALE) NOR 8 NORDHAUG, Lars Petter (BELKIN) CRC 9 AMADOR BAKKAZAKOVA, Andrey (MOVISTAR) POL 10 NIEMIEC, Przemyslaw (LAMPRE – MERIDA) RUS 11 FIRSANOV, Sergey (RUSVELO) NED 12 POELS, Wouter (OMEGA PHARMA – QUICK-STEP) COL 13 ARREDONDO MORENO, Julian David (TREK FACTORY RACING) NED 14 WEENING, Pieter (ORICA GreenEDGE) ESP 15 IZAGUIRRE INSAUSTI, Gorka (MOVISTAR) CAN 16 HESJEDAL, Ryder (GARMIN SHARP) SVK 17 VELITS, Peter (BMC RACING) FRA 18 BOUET, Maxime (AG2R LA MONDIALE) ITA 19 CARUSO, Giampaolo (KATUSHA) POL 20 RUTKIEWICZ, Marek (CCC POLSAT POLKOWICE)
General Classification after Stage 5 CZE 1 VAKOC, Petr (OMEGA PHARMA – QUICK-STEP) 25:05:29 POL 2 MAJKA, Rafal (TINKOFF-SAXO) ESP 3 INTXAUSTI ELORRIAGA, Benat (MOVISTAR) + 4 ESP 4 IZAGUIRRE INSAUSTI, Jon (MOVISTAR) + 6 ITA 5 FORMOLO, Davide (CANNONDALE) + 10 ITA 6 CARUSO, Damiano (CANNONDALE) POL 7 RUTKIEWICZ, Marek (CCC POLSAT POLKOWICE) SVK 8 VELITS, Peter (BMC RACING) CRC 9 AMADOR BAKKAZAKOVA, Andrey (MOVISTAR) NED 10 GESINK, Robert (BELKIN)
You must be logged in to post a comment.