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Tour de Pologne 2015: Stage 3

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Stage 3 runs 166km from Zawiercie to Katowice. Another sprint finish is expected, but we hope with no crash today!

Today is a rolling stage, with 4 intermediate sprints and two cat. 3 climbs, both near the end.

88km remaining from 166km

We are just about at the halfway point now. The lead group of six is at the 78km marker, with a gap of some two minutes. 

 

A break group formed very early on, with Ian Boswell (Sky), Marcus Burghardt (BMC), Matej Mohorić (Cannondale), Adrian Kurek (CCC), Marcin Białobłocki (Pol). It was Kurek’s third straight break group, and Burghardt was in yesterday’s group. Kamil Gradek of the national Polish team took off in pursuit of the group, and Bialoblocki dropped back to bring him up to the front. The group of six had a lead of up to three minutes.

We had two DNS today. Maxim Belkov of Katusha was injured in yesterday’s mass crash, and Robert Gesink of LottoNL-Jumbo has begged off with exhaustion.

There were surprisingly few injuries in that huge crash yesterday. The only rider who was unable to start today because of it was Belkov, who had a deep wound in his lower back, for which he got 25 stitches, some of them in the muscle, some in the skin. Ouch, and get well!

We have had two intermediate sprints so far. The second was one by Bialoblocki, the first by Gradek.

 

72km remaining from 166km

With 72 km to go, the lead group has a gap of 1:20, as they pass through the feed zone.

 

Mohoric and Biobilocki have attacked out of the lead group.

 

Our race leader is Marcel Kittel (Giant-Alpecin), who won the first stage and was second yesterday. Second is Caleb Ewan, of Orica-GreenEdge, with Niccolo Bonifazio (Lampre-Merida) rounding out the top three.

The breakaway has split up into three groups of two, but all fairly close together. And it has started to rain. 

 

Kittel also leads the points ranking, naturally, ahead of Bonifazio and Kris Boeckmans (Lotto Soudal).

Gradek and Burghardt are now back in the field. Boswell, Mohoric, Kurek and Bioloblocki are in the lead, and just passed through the third intermediate sprint, with Bioloblocki taking top points. Their gap is now 2:35.

 

#tdp Białobłocki is the Polish TT champion. 31 years, 1st WT race for him. Won nationals on 44km course, did such a distance 1st time ever.

@8aldwin Tue, 4th Aug 2015 15:14:54

IAM is leading the chase, as the race moves into laps of the circuit course. 

 

The mountain jersey is held by Kurek, ahead of Martijn Keiser (LottoNL-Jumbo) and Sander Armee (Lotto Soudal).

50km remaining from 166km

 50 km and 1:32 for the four leaders. 

Yesterday's stage, of course, ended with a huge crash, which literally blocked the whole road. Only nine riders were able to sprint for the finish, with Kittel and Penuchi battling it out. The German finished second, but was able to retain his yellow jersey.

 

The gap keeps coming down, now just barely over a minute.

 

If you missed the excitement yesterday, here is the video from that crash. 

 

Giant Alpecin is appearing at the head of the field now, along with IAM, as the cross the finish line and take off on the penultimate lap.

 

Taylor Phinney (BMC) pretty much smashed his left leg to smithereens 14 months ago. The Tour of Utah is his first race back, and what a comeback he made, finishing third on the opening stage. 

 

There is lots of racing going on now. Not just Poland and Utah, but Denmark too. Today was the opening stage of the Post Denmark Rundt.

 

Boswell has a chat with the Team Sky car. Gap is 1:04, with 36km to go.

 

The top three from yesterday's Utah stage all came from different teams -- but they are all good friends and in fact train together in the Boulder, Colorado, area. 

 

32.5km left, and the sprinters' teams decided enough is enough. The gap is now under a minute.

 

We are now approaching the first climb of the day, although we must admit we have not really seen much of an ascent. At any rate, the points go to Kurek, who leads the mountain ranking anyway.

 

Marcus Burghardt, who was once in the lead group, now leads the chasing peloton.

 

Once more through the finish line, and we must admit we were wrong last time. THIS time, however, they really are on the penultimate lap!

 

The leaders are being slowly reeled in: 35 seconds and 23 km.

 

The lead group has been blown apart. Bialoblocki has taken off, with Boswell giving chase. 

 

Back in the field, a handful of riders are trying to gt away, but aren't really allowed to. The lead rider has only 20 seconds at this point. 

 

Bialoblocki has built up a 31 second gap.

 

Boswell has been dangling in between the leader and the field -- which just caught him.

 

Etixx-QuickStep now takes over the lead work in the chase. 

 

Biabolocki now has 45 seconds. He is only 24 seconds down on GC, so a win could give him the overall lead. 

 

Once more over the finish line, and off on the bell lap for the field. 48 seconds!

 

The mountain ranking "looms" again -- of course the points go to our lone leader.

 

A Movstar rider has jumped from the field.

 

The Movistar is Sutterlin.

 

The gap starts falling now -- or is it the gap to Sutterlin? 35 seconds. 

 

Orica-GreenEdge sees that Bialoblocki is going well and takes over the chase work, in support of Caleb Ewan.

 

The field is strung out single file, as they fly along.

 

Looking bad for the Pole -- only about 12 seconds now, with 7km to go.

 

He is not giving up,though!

 

Just only 5km now, and he will be gulped up at any moment.

 

And that is it for Bialoblocki, caught with 4.2km to go. But congratulations to him for a great effort.

 

Orica and Trek are heading up things.  Astana, Giant-Alpecin are also up there in the mix.

 

Six riders with a slight lead  - but now caught. The sprint opens!

A wild and hard fought sprint , with Pelucci taking the win again!

 

Nizzolo was second, and we think Kittle was third. The German started from too far back to be able to come all the way forward.

There won't be any complaints about Pelucchi's win today.

 

Not Kittel in third, but Tom van Asbroeck of LottoNL-Jumbo.

 

No word on FC, but it looks as if Kittel will keep the yellow. Presumably Nizzolo will move up to second.

 

Two wins in a row for Pelucchi! Those are his first two wins since the Mallorca Challenge in January/February.

 

"When the soreness is not too much, we can go for it again,” @Tomvanasbroeck said yesterday. He was close! #TDP2015 http://t.co/8cBhxqIfLA

@LottoJumbo_road Tue, 4th Aug 2015 16:46:56

Top six on the stage:

1 Matteo Pelucchi (Ita) IAM Cycling 03:48:41

2 Giacomo Nizzolo (Ita) Trek Factory Racing

3 Tom Van Asbroeck (Bel) Team LottoNL-Jumbo

4 Roberto Ferrari (Ita) Lampre-Merida

5 Niccolo Bonifazio (Ita) Lampre-Merida

6 Gianni Meersman (Bel) Etixx - Quick-Step

Kittel retains the overall lead and the sprinter's jersey. 

 

Now it looks like we are finally getting the official results. First, the stage:  

1 Matteo Pelucchi (Ita) IAM Cycling

2 Giacomo Nizzolo (Ita) Trek Factory Racing

3 Tom Van Asbroeck (Bel) Team LottoNL-Jumbo

4 Roberto Ferrari (Ita) Lampre-Merida

5 Niccolo Bonifazio (Ita) Lampre-Merida

6 Gianni Meersman (Bel) Etixx - Quick-Step

7 Marcel Kittel (Ger) Team Giant-Alpecin

8 Pawel Franczak (Pol) Poland

9 Andrea Guardini (Ita) Astana Pro Team

10 Roger Kluge (Ger) IAM Cycling

They seem to be having trouble with the GC....

 

And the GC, still not officially official, but we trust them!

1 Marcel Kittel (Ger) Team Giant-Alpecin 09:51:50

2 Giacomo Nizzolo (Ita) Trek Factory Racing 00:00:06

3 Caleb Ewan (Aus) Orica GreenEdge 00:00:10

4 Marcus Burghardt (Ger) BMC Racing Team

5 Niccolo Bonifazio (Ita) Lampre-Merida 00:00:12

6 Tom Van Asbroeck (Bel) Team LottoNL-Jumbo 00:00:16

7 Sébastien Turgot (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale

8 Salvatore Puccio (Ita) Team Sky

9 Lorenzo Manzin (Fra) FDJ.fr  

10 Nikias Arndt (Ger) Team Giant-Alpecin

 

 

That's it! Thanks for reading along and join us again tomorrow!

 

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