Former race leader Michael Matthews came close to taking victory on today’s sixth stage in Paris-Nice, fighting to third place on a hard-up hill finish which saw race leader Primoz Roglic (Team Jumbo-Visma) come out on top for the stage win.
Team BikeExchange’s GC hopeful, Lucas Hamilton was also amongst the action on the final drag to the line, climbing to sixth place on the stage, to move himself up to seventh overall with two days still remaining.
Team BikeExchange showed their ambitions for the day and took control of the bunch to give Matthews the best chance possible, setting a hard tempo in an attempt to drop the pure sprinters and gradually draw back a breakaway group of six riders.
Inside the final seven kilometres, one of the original escapees and a fresh new attacker added to the tension, dangling ahead, forcing the peloton to chase hard. With one-kilometre to go, the race was back together again ready for a showdown on the steep kick-up, where Roglic displayed his class, edging out the Team BikeExchange sprinter.
Michael Matthews – 3rd
“We took control today; we knew it was a good stage for us and we tried to make it an easy of a sprint as we could. The boys did a great job but unfortunately, we came away with third. We gave it everything and tomorrow is another day.
“The next two days are pretty big climbing days, and we have Lucas Hamilton in great shape so we will support him 100% and see what he can do with the big boys on the final climb.”
Lucas Hamilton – 6th
“It was a hard day, we rode a really good race, we rode all day for Bling (Micheal Matthews) and in the end it was a close one.
“It was maybe a little bit too hard, but it was a good day for us, and we showed how strong we are. Unfortunately we didn’t get the win today but there’s always another race around the corner and tomorrow I think is an uphill finish so we will see.”
2021 Paris-Nice Results – Stage 6:
1. Primoz Roglic (Team Jumbo-Visma) 4:40:22
2. Maximillian Schachmann (Bora-hansgrohe) ST
3. Michael Matthews (Team BikeExchange) ST
6. Lucas Hamilton (Team BikeExchange) ST
General Classification after stage 6:
1. Primoz Roglic (Team Jumbo-Visma) 23:22:53
2. Maximillian Schachmann (Bora-hansgrohe) +0:41
3. Ion Izagirre (Astana-Premier Tech) 0:50
7. Lucas Hamilton (Team BikeExchange) +1:16
Photo courtesy of Getty Images