Tour de Hongrie: Jakobsen gets two in a row with stage 3 victory

Fabio Jakobsen (QuickStep-AlphaVinyl) hit out along the right side barriers and won stage 3 of the Tour de Hongrie in a frenzied, fast finish at Kossuth Square. 

Rudy Barbier (Israel-Premier Tech) finished second and Sasha Weemaes (S;port Vlaanderen-Baloise) third on the wet roads at the end of the 154km stage. 

Jakobsen took over the GC lead from Jens Reynders (Sport Vlaanderen-Baloise), who now trails the QuickStep sprinter by six seconds. Barbier is third overall, another two seconds back, and takes over as the points classification leader.

After a slight bend in the wide roads of Nyíregyháza, all the lead-out trains were bunched together for the long finish. Jakobsen was not in sight until the final 200 metres.

“I followed Florian. I lost him a bit but for sure we found each other again in the mess. I found him with 800 or 900 [metres] to go. He went early, maybe a bit too early but at least I am in position," Jakobsen said. "And then I jumped on the wheels of Bora, they still had three, and I went behind their sprinter. 

"Then I just launched with 200 metres to go from the slipstream. I could pass on the right side because there was a gap. Luckily I could hold it to the finish line, even though the road was wet, I could feel the wheels slip a bit. It’s a team success and I am happy that I could finish it off."

It was a slight 1% gradient to the finish line, which suited the QuickStep sprinter, who  added a second victory in as many days.

"In the Netherlands we would call this uphill. I like it when it’s a little bit uphill, that suits me. It’s always nice to win. Yesterday I showed I still had the legs, and today I confirmed. And tomorrow there is another opportunity."

The third day of Tour de Hongrie departed in the rain from Sárospatak with a group of five riders gaining 1:15 in the opening 26 kilometres. Aaron Van Poucke (Sport Vlaanderen-Baloise) led the charge in the red climber’s jersey for the top points on the only categorised ascent of the day. With his mission accomplished, he dropped back from the lead group, leaving the quartet of Alessandro Fancellu (Eolo-Kometa), Ricardo Zurita (Drone Hopper-Androni Giocattoli), Keegan Swirbul (Human Powered Health) and Emil Dima (Giotti Victoria-Savini Due) to extend their lead over the next 40km of rolling roads to the flat sections with two intermediate sprints on hand.

A train stopped both the breakaway and the peloton with 76km to go, just before the first intermediate sprint in Tokaj. The breakaway of Fancellu, Zurita, Swirbul and Dima resumed with its 1:30 advantage, once race organisers gave the all clear. 

The gap was down to 28 seconds at the final intermediate sprint in Kemecse with just under 21km to race, and the breakaway was in sight of the peloton once the sprint points were handed out. Three kilometres later they were all back together due to the pace being driven by QuickStep-AlphaVinyl, Ineos Grenadiers and Sport Vlaanderen-Baloise.

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Jackie Tyson
North American Production editor

Jackie has been involved in professional sports for more than 30 years in news reporting, sports marketing and public relations. She founded Peloton Sports in 1998, a sports marketing and public relations agency, which managed projects for Tour de Georgia, Larry H. Miller Tour of Utah and USA Cycling. She also founded Bike Alpharetta Inc, a Georgia non-profit to promote safe cycling. She is proud to have worked in professional baseball for six years - from selling advertising to pulling the tarp for several minor league teams. She has climbed l'Alpe d'Huez three times (not fast). Her favorite road and gravel rides are around horse farms in north Georgia (USA) and around lavender fields in Provence (France), and some mtb rides in Park City, Utah (USA).

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