Following an underwhelming classics campaign, Alexander Kristoff bounced back in Germany with his third career Eschborn-Frankfurt victory. The Norwegian was assisted by German teammate Rick Zabel in the finale with the duo recording a one-two finish for Katusha-Alpecin in the wet and cold conditions.
"This was the coldest one I can remember. It was quite cold with the rain all day. I took off my jacket and rode the last three laps without it, but I was regretting it the whole way. It was very cold today, but the same guys as usual were still there fighting for victory," said Kristoff who previously won the race in 2014 and 2016.
Although the win was Kristoff's first at WorldTour level since the 2015 edition of GP Ouest France-Plouay, it was his seventh of the season. While Kristoff had an edge over his sprint rivals at the race knowing how to win, he explained that he though his race could be over
"I was a little bit dropped on the last climb but I had a strong team around me to pull me back. Without them I would have had no chance. We came back just before the laps and Rick was guiding me through the corners at the end and he did a perfect lead out for me and ended up second himself," he explained.
"Luckily he was my teammate in those last few k's because otherwise I think he would have won the race! Earlier Tony Martin and Angel Vicioso and also team Bora Hansgrohe were working with us. Then at the end Nils Politt and Zabel took over. It was a big team effort to get back on the front that enabled me to sprint for the victory. We are really happy and it was a great performance."
For Zabel, it was his best result yet since making the move across from BMC to Katusha.
"This was a great day. I am really happy with how the team did today and mine and Alex’s performances," said Zabel. "Second in a WorldTour race is also super, a very good result for me. It was a great day for us and we can be super happy."