Bob Jungels was heavily tipped to win the overall Tirreno-Adriatico until a late-race breakaway escaped on stage 6, but the young Luxembourger fought through a bad day to save his race with a third place overall behind winner Greg Van Avermaet (BMC Racing) and second placed Peter Sagan (Tinkoff).
Jungels came into the final stage, a 10.1km time trial in San Benedetto del Tronto, in fourth place overall 21 seconds down on Van Avermaet, and ended the day third, replacing his teammate Zdenek Stybar on the final overall podium.
“Although today I didn’t have the legs I was hoping for, I fought until the very end to get in the top three," Jungels said. "We knew it would come down to just a couple of seconds and I’m satisfied that I managed to pull it off even on a bad day."
In addition to the podium spot, Jungels was best young rider and helped Etixx-Quickstep win the teams classification.
“We can be really satisfied with the race: we got two stage wins, a second place in the opening team time trial and we were always there at the front. The last two days were a bit hard for us, but in the end we have to be happy with the race we had. I am satisfied with my maiden WorldTour podium, which gives me a lot of confidence for the next appointments of the season. I am looking to a great future together with Etixx-Quick-Step. Even in the difficult moments we stick together, we are a real team and I just love it here.”
Tony Martin added to the string of results with a third place on the stage behind Fabian Cancellara (Trek-Segafredo) and Johan Le Bon (FDJ), while former race leader Zdenek Stybar ended the race seventh overall.
“It was a great Tirreno-Adriatico for us, starting with the second place on the first day and continuing with the two stage victories, the one of Styby and that of Fernando [Gaviria], who confirmed again his huge potential," said Etixx-Quickstep directeur sportif Davide Bramati. "There’s also the team classification win, which rewards the riders who worked relentlessly during the whole race and the staff who was always there, helping and supporting the guys at all times.
"Anyway, it wasn’t only about the victories or the podiums or the strong results we recorded," Bramati said. "Another very important aspect was to see that the team is working hard and is staying close regardless of what’s happening, and what we did during this race made us happy.”
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