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As it happened: Alberto Bettiol takes over race lead as puncheurs battle out Tour de Suisse stage 3

Tour de Suisse 2024 stage 3 profile

Profile on stage 3 of the Tour de Suisse (Image credit: Tour de Suisse)

Tour de Suisse 2024


Hello and welcome to Cyclingnews' live coverage of stage 3 of the Tour de Suisse!

Today's stage looks simple on paper with a relatively flat route starting in Steinmaur and running south towards the eastern outskirts of Zurich. However, close inspection shows a tough, hilly final 30km where the action should explode into life all before the final uphill kick to the line in Rüschlikon.

It's been a tough morning for Bora-Hansgrohe with Emanuel Buchmann being forced to pull out of the race due to breaking his hip and collarbone in a late crash yesterday:

Movistar have also been hit with bad news Nairo Quintana's poor luck in 2024 has continued during his comeback to the WorldTour:

Who will be the next winner at the Tour de Suisse after Yves Lampaert (Sodal Quick-Step) claimed the ITT and Bryan Coquard (Cofidis) took yesterday's sprint stage?

Stage start

161.7KM TO GO

The early attacks have started outside of Steinmaur with some familiar names from yesterday's break getting into the move: Luca Jenni, Christoph Janssen (both Swiss Cycling), Roberto Carlos González (Team Corratec-Vini Fantini), Johan Jacobs (Movistar) and Fabian Lienhard (Groupama-FDJ).


Confirmation that 164 riders remain at the Tour de Suisse with Buchmann and Quintana pulling out injured. 

Bahrain Victorious had been doing the work on the front of the peloton but that seems to have stopped now with the break of the day formed in the opening 15km.

Here's the five-man move getting up the road, with Lienhard leading on the front. 


Time gap to the five leaders has stabilised at the 2:15-mark.

While there's a chance, make sure to read Philippa York's analysis from last week's Critérium du Dauphiné:


With control of the race leader's yellow jersey, Soudal Quick-Step have taken up the job of riding on the front of the peloton to protect Lampaert's lead.

It's no surprise to see either Lienhard or Jacobs in this lead group as very local riders to today's route, with the former even being from the today's start location- Steinmaur.


Gap is only growing to the five in front with it now at 3:40.


Average speed in the first hour was 50.9kph with a lot of downhill roads in the opening phase. 


Here's last year's Tour de Suisse winner Mattias Skjelmose being guided safely in the peloton by his Lidl-Trek teammates.



Always nice to local riders get into the break such as Johan Jacobs for Movistar today.

Having started the day just 21 seconds off Lampaert's lead, Luca Jenni (Swiss Cycling) is in the virtual lead of the race. The gap to the break is still 3:50 with just over 70km remaining. 


30km to go until the intermediate sprint in Aristau.

Jayco AlUla and Lott Dstny are the other top teams taking on the chasing at the front of the peloton. Gap down to 2:50.


Here's how much of the day has looked on stage 3 with Jayco, Lotto and Quick-Step leading the chase behind in the peloton. 

Here's some of the top puncheurs and versatile sprinters to look out for in today's finale:

Tom Pidcock (Ineos Grenadiers)
Maxim van Gils (Lotto Dstny)
Marc Hirschi (UAE Team Emirates)
Alberto Bettiol (EF Education-EasyPost)
Michael Matthews (Jayco AlUla)
Arnaud De Lie (Lotto Dstny)
Roger Adria (Bora-Hansgrohe)
Mattias Skjelmose (Lidl-Trek)
Axel Laurance (Alpecin-Deceuninck)

We've not had too much action but remember, all of the hardest racing is jam-packed into the final 30km. Racing should really kick off with a downhill run to the intermediate sprint and from then on in, it will only be up and down until the line in Rüschlikon.


Alpecin-Deceuninck have also started showing their double denim jerseys near the front of the peloton. Axel Laurance should be their man today and has showed great form in his first season on Alpecin's WorldTour team after becoming U23 World Champion in August. 

Pace is absolutely rapid in the peloton with Ineos, EF and Israel all now involved at the front. Everyone is aware of the incoming tough terrain after an easy start to the day. 

We're at full approach pace now, so much so that it looks like 5km from the finish. Huge rush to be in prime position coming into the next few key kilometres. Intermediate sprint not far away now in Aristau.


González led the breakaway through the intermediate sprint point with Lienhard in second and Jacobs in third. 

The break will be heading downhill for the next few kilometres before coming into the read action point of the day - the first climb. It will be a 3.8km Cat.3 test to Oberwil-Lieli with average gradients of 5.4%.

Alpecin and Jayco still leading with serious pace on the front. Mark Cavendish (Astana Qazaqstan) has been staying right towards the front. He won't be going for the win today but will be pleased to get some tough training in the legs ahead of the Tour de France. 

The breakaway's advantage is disappearing quickly on the lower slopes of the first climb - now down to 1:18.

Here come the pink jerseys of EF Education-EasyPost and they've taken over the front of the peloton. They have great options for the stage in Alberto Bettiol, Marijn van den Berg, Rui Cost and GC leader Richard Carapaz


Could this be Yves Lampaert's final day in the yellow jersey?

González doesn't give any gifts to Jenni who is struggling more towards the crest, making the Swiss man work all the way to the line. But it looks like he didn't quite make it. He is now equal with Gerben Kuypers (Intermarché-Wanty) who went into the KOM jersey yesterday but may still be in the jersey after the day. 


Racing has calmed momentarily in the peloton ahead of the Tissot golden kilometre. Jacobs has set off in pursuit of the watch prize and bonus seconds with the peloton waiting for the climbs to restart the all out action. 

Jacobs has got away nicely and is showing strong legs. He's rebuilt a 50-second lead on the peloton and 30 on his former escapees.

Here's that lovely moment from today's lone leader Jacobs:

With more climbs approaching after this descent, the pace is picking up again in the peloton. Lotto Dstny are again active in the lead after showing their intentions all day. Home team Tudor are the newest team to start sniffing around the front of the peloton. 

González and Jenni are about to get caught after another strong day in the break, leaving just the Movistar man Jacobs in front after 140km of racing. 


Here's a last look at Johan Jacobs (Movistar) as he is close to being pulled back fully by the peloton. Great ride out in the breakaway, however, so chapeau. 

Lots of riders beginning to struggle under the infernal pace being set by EF. GC men showing themselves also in the first few wheels, ensuring they don't get caught on the wrong side of a split. 

Lidl-Trek came through and did some work earlier on the front, which could either be for last year's TDS winner Skjelmose or the super talented Thibau Nys. 


Ethan Hayter (Ineos) is doing Ethan Hayter things and sitting at the back of the peloton. Today's finish could be best for him or Pidcock with a punchy finish but he will have to move up in the next few kilometres if he is to contest the day. 

A look at the men in pink, EF Education-EasyPost leading stage 3 of the Tour de Suisse through Stefan Bissegger. They have multiple options for the finale today in Bettiol, Van den Berg and Carapaz.

Onto the foot of the final categorised climb of the day now. It's far from the last inclines of the day but should play a big part in thinning down the peloton. 

New team at the front of proceedings - Visma-Lease a Bike have taken over. They have Hungarian champ Attila Valter leading things for now with lots of teams just sitting in and waiting for their moment. 


Here we go Valentin Paret-Peintre, fresh off the back of his Giro d'Italia success. The small frame as recognisable as ever. Adam Yates responds for UAE and chases down the Frenchman. 


Michael Matthews and Ethan Hayter both still in their but further down the pack. 

Some beautiful descending roads to take on and taking them on is just what Tom Pidcock is doing. He's gapping some of those daring to follow his aggressive lines down off the climb.

Bettiol recognised the danger of the Brit's downhill skills and quickly jumped across to his wheel, prompting him to save his legs for the final.

It's downhill for the next couple of kilometres until the race hits a small kicker and then descends again before reaching the uphill kick to the line into Rüschlikon, with slopes of 9% characterising the finale. 


Yves Lampaert is still in the peloton and will be hoping he can limit the damage over the final ramps and hold onto the leader's yellow jersey. 

The Bora-led peloton is onto that small kicker but the pace has slowed momentarily. Lots of tension in the front of the peloton with each and every corner a chance to improve your positioning for the finale.

Alpecin-Deceeninck take over on the incline all while working for Axel Laurance. Hirschi is launching a move and he's got a gap on local lad Mauro Schmid!

Hirschi is going beautifully and kicking hard over the incline. He's got a lead, albeit a small one, but he is continuing on now inside the 3km to-go mark.


A pedestrian nearly crossed the road with a dog and distracted Hirschi but he is back into his rhythm and working away with a 5-second lead on the charging peloton. 

Hirschi is being closed down quickly now with Alpecin putting on the pace. But has he saved anything for the uphill final?

Alpecin run out of steam and here come Decathlon AG2R La Mondiale. Hirschi is being reeled back in now and he's done.

EF, Quick-Step and many others are waiting in the wings behind AG2R but who has the power to take the day?

Thibau Nys is in prime position and preparing for the final spint.

Here comes Nys and he hits the front with 2 in his wheel but he has a small gap with Williams chasing him.

Thibau Nys (Lidl-Trek) wins stage 3 of the Tour de Suisse in a thrilling finale!

Replay of the finale shows just how strong the young Belgian's kick was once he hit the front. He sat in on the wheel of Wiclo Keldermann (Visma-Lease a Bike) coming into the final few corners but once he hit the accelerator, no one could match his infernal pace. 

Here's what second-place Williams said after taking second in another strong performance by the Welshman:

Thibau Nys' winning moment on stage 3 of the Tour de Suisse. It isn't actually his first WorldTour win after taking one at the Tour de Romandie in April but this is probably an even bigger victory to take in his young career. 

Confirmation that Yves Lampaert (Soudal Quick-Step) didn't stay in contact as the race split apart in the uphill run for home, meaning EF were rewarded for all their work on the front with Alberto Bettiol moving into the yellow jersey thanks to his 4 bonus seconds gained for third. 

It was an emotional win for Thibau Nys who has only continued to show his brilliance this 2024 season. Here's what he had to say after his victory:

Here's the new race leader at the Tour de Suisse - Alberto Bettiol (EF Education-EasyPost). 

With an ITT and two punchier stages completed, the Tour de Suisses heads to the harder inclines with the first summit finish of a brutal week of racing. We should see GC gaps form and all-out racing from the top climber up the Gotthardpass (8.2 km at 6.6%).

Also make sure to read our full stage report from today's explosive day of racing:

That wraps things up for our live coverage of stage 3 of the Tour de Suisse. Make sure to check back tomorrow for our live coverage of the 171km stage from Rüschlikon up to the Gotthardpass to see how the GC battle develops.

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