With a finish suited to John Degenkolb, Trek-Segafredo swarmed to the front of the peloton to set up its German fast man for stage 3 victory at the Tour de Suisse. Second at the GP du canton d'Argovie heading into the Swiss WorldTour race, Degenkolb had his team at his disposal.
Despite leading the peloton for the closing kilometres with Koen de Kort the last man standing for the team, Degenkolb was left without a teammate for the final 900 metres when Team Sunweb took over and set up Michael Matthews for the win.
Reflecting on the result, Degenkolb suggested the team was too keen and overplayed its hand.
"We did a really good job, maybe we were a little too enthusiastic, too motivated, but we were up there," Degenkolb said. "In the end, the speed was a little bit too high to make it completely up to the last final meters, so I had to drop back a few positions, but the team did really well."
The race is Degenkolb's first stage race on European soil since Paris-Nice in March and is an important one as he prepares for the Tour de France next month. A stage winner at the Dubai Tour, Degenkolb is looking to convert his podium places and top-10s into wins.
"We had a good team effort today, and we could not have done more – maybe second, but Michael Matthews was super," sports director Kim Andersen said of the stage.
Having finished in last place on stage 2, over twenty minutes down on winner Philippe Gilbert, Jarlinson Pantano waved goodbye to his GC aspirations but he has shown signs of recovery from stomach issues that hampered him early on.
"I had told Jarlinson he didn't need to do anything today, but it looked like he was feeling quite well and he's back," said Andersen. "We can hope he can recover a little more and that he can be ready for the mountain stages and try and win one of the hilltop finishes."
With stage 4 of the Tour de Suisse featuring the first hilltop finish for 2017, Pantano has an opportunity to test himself and add to his stage win from last year.