Poulhiès repeats in Ales

Rolland retains lead ahead of afternoon time trial

Stéphane Poulhiès (Saur-Sojasun) repeated his feat of a year ago by winning the penultimate stage of the Étoile de Bessèges into Ales. The Frenchman proved too fast for Justin Jules (Véranda Rideau U) and Bobbie Traksel (Landbouwkrediet) in the bunch finish, while Pierre Rolland (Europcar) safely maintained his overall lead ahead of Sunday afternoon’s concluding time trial.

The freezing weather that has struck much of continental Europe in recent days once more played havoc with the race, and organisers were again forced to make alterations to the route. Glaze ice on its upper slopes saw the proposed summit finish at the Col de la Baraque removed from the route, and instead the peloton tackled the lower part of the climb before returning to finish in Ales.

The main break of the morning came 20km into the stage, as Renaud Dion (Bretagne Schuller), Frédéric Amorison (Landbouwkrediet) and Jonathan Hivert (Saur Sojasun) sallied clear of the peloton, although their advantage never stretched beyond the minute mark.

Hivert forced the pace on the way up the truncated climb of the Col de la Baraque, first dropping Dion and then forcing his way clear of Amorison at the beginning of the descent. With 10km to race, Hivert still had 44 seconds in hand on the peloton, but he was eventually swallowed up on the approach to Ales.

In the finishing sprint, it was Poulhiès who emerged from the carnage, seeing off the challenge of Jules and Traksel, while his teammate Jimmy Engoulvent came home in third. Overall, Pierre Rolland has 6 seconds in hand over Franck Vermeulen (Veranda Rideau U) ahead of the afternoon’s short time trial.


# Rider Name (Country) Team Result
1 Stéphane Poulhies (Fra) Saur - Sojasun 1:40:35  
2 Justin Jules (Fra) Veranda Rideau U    
3 Bobbie Traksel (Ned) Landbouwkrediet    
4 Michael Van Staeyen (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen - Mercator    
5 Jimmy Engoulvent (Fra) Saur - Sojasun    
6 Samuel Dumoulin (Fra) Cofidis Le Crédit en Ligne    
7 Armindo Fonseca (Fra) Bretagne - Schuller    
8 Anthony Ravard (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale    
9 Kurt Hovelynck (Bel) Landbouwkrediet    
10 Gijs Van Hoecke (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen - Mercator    
11 Kris Boeckmans (Bel) Vacansoleil - DCM Pro Cycling    
12 Tom Van Asbroeck (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen - Mercator    
13 Matthieu Sprick (Fra) Project 1t4i    
14 Alexandre Pichot (Fra) Team Europcar    
15 Davy Commeyne (Bel) Landbouwkrediet    
16 Sven Jodts (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen - Mercator    
17 Jean-Luc Delpech (Fra) Bretagne - Schuller    
18 Simon Geschke (Ger) Project 1t4i    
19 Yannick Martinez (Fra) Vélo Club La Pomme Marseille    
20 Staf Scheirlinckx (Bel) Accent.Jobs - Willems Verandas    
21 Gediminas Bagdonas (Ltu) An Post - Sean Kelly    
22 Maxime Bouet (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale    
23 Romain Matheou (Fra) Veranda Rideau U    
24 Davide Malacarne (Ita) Team Europcar    
25 Rémi Cusin (Fra) Team Type 1 - Sanofi    
26 Gaël Malacarne (Fra) Bretagne - Schuller    
27 Dirk Bellemakers (Ned) Landbouwkrediet    
28 Ronan Racault (Fra) Auber 93    
29 Guillaume Bonnafond (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale    
30 Koen Barbe (Bel) Landbouwkrediet    
31 Marco Marcato (Ita) Vacansoleil - DCM Pro Cycling    
32 Dimitri Le Bouch (Fra) Auber 93    
33 Georg Preidler (Aut) Team Type 1 - Sanofi    
34 Laszlo Bodrogi (Fra) Team Type 1 - Sanofi    
35 Pieter Vanspeybrouck (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen - Mercator    
36 Anthony Delaplace (Fra) Saur - Sojasun    
37 Bert De Waele (Bel) Landbouwkrediet    
38 Andy Cappelle (Bel) Accent.Jobs - Willems Verandas    
39 Pierre-Luc Perichon (Fra) Vélo Club La Pomme Marseille    
40 Julien El Fares (Fra) Team Type 1 - Sanofi    
41 Steve Houanard (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale    
42 Sébastien Minard (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale    
43 Rémi Di Gregorio (Fra) Cofidis Le Crédit en Ligne    
44 Tristan Valentin (Fra) Cofidis Le Crédit en Ligne    
45 Bertjan Lindeman (Ned) Vacansoleil - DCM Pro Cycling    
46 Rob Goris (Bel) Accent.Jobs - Willems Verandas    
47 Pierrick Fedrigo (Fra) FDJ - Big Mat    
48 Frederik Veuchelen (Bel) Vacansoleil - DCM Pro Cycling    
49 Jérôme Coppel (Fra) Saur - Sojasun    
50 Arnaud Gerard (Fra) FDJ - Big Mat    
51 Daniele Colli (Ita) Team Type 1 - Sanofi    
52 Yannick Talabardon (Fra) Saur - Sojasun    
53 Anthony Geslin (Fra) FDJ - Big Mat    
54 Jonathan Hivert (Fra) Saur - Sojasun    
55 Thomas Vaubourzeix (Fra) Vélo Club La Pomme Marseille    
56 David Lelay (Fra) Saur - Sojasun    
57 Rein Taaramae (Est) Cofidis Le Crédit en Ligne    
58 Rony Martias (Fra) Saur - Sojasun    
59 Julien Antomarchi (Fra) Team Type 1 - Sanofi    
60 Leif Hoste (Bel) Accent.Jobs - Willems Verandas    
61 Frédéric Amorison (Bel) Landbouwkrediet    
62 Jean-Marc Bideau (Fra) Bretagne - Schuller    
63 Yukiya Arashiro (Jpn) Team Europcar    
64 Sébastien Chavanel (Fra) Team Europcar    
65 Pierre Rolland (Fra) Team Europcar    
66 Franck Vermeulen (Fra) Veranda Rideau U    
67 Mark McNally (GBr) An Post - Sean Kelly    
68 Niko Eeckhout (Bel) An Post - Sean Kelly    
69 Fabien Bacquet (Fra) Auber 93    
70 Renaud Dion (Fra) Bretagne - Schuller 0:02:31  
71 Bert De Backer (Bel) Project 1t4i    
72 Mickaël Olejnik (Pol) Veranda Rideau U    
73 Dominique Cornu (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen - Mercator    
74 Steven Tronet (Fra) Auber 93 0:02:35  
75 Loïc Desriac (Fra) Roubaix Lille Métropole 0:02:37  
76 Maxime Le Montagner (Fra) Veranda Rideau U 0:02:39  
77 Cédric Pineau (Fra) FDJ - Big Mat 0:03:31  
78 Gaylord Cumont (Fra) Veranda Rideau U 0:04:16  
DNF Adrien Petit (Fra) Cofidis Le Crédit en Ligne    
DNF Jure Kocjan (Slo) Team Type 1 - Sanofi    
DNF Kevyn Ista (Bel) Accent.Jobs - Willems Verandas    
DNF Jean-Pierre Drucker (Lux) Accent.Jobs - Willems Verandas    
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