Albasini spends the day in the breakaway as Haig slips to 13th overall at Tour de SuisseFri 15 Jun 2018
Australian Jack Haig fought hard on today's final mountain stage at the Tour de Suisse, crossing the line in 23rd place, as the main general classification riders battled it out all the way to the summit.
The 24-year-old climbed the lengthy Hors category Arosa, to finish two minutes 30seconds behind the eventual stage winner Nairo Quintana (Movistar). The Mitchelton-SCOTT rider dropped slightly down the overall rankings to 13th place with two-days remaining.
In the opening kilometres, local Swiss rider Michael Albasini jumped into a breakaway group of 29riders which rode out to a three minute advantage.
Albasini had previously won the same stage on the same final climb back in 2012 where he attacked away from the breakaway to take a solo win, and today gave himself the another opportunity.
Splits on the final climb
With it being the final day for the general classification contenders to battle it out in the mountains, Quintana made a brave attack at the bottom of the final climb and quickly distanced race leader Richie Porte (BMC).
The pace was furious as Quintana passed the remaining escapees one-by-one to leave a front group of 11riders in the final 15kilometres.
Behind, BMC led the chase to keep Porte in contention which caused the main bunch to shrink in size. Haig, unable to stay with the pace, found himself in the third group on the road as the chasers drew closer to the leading Quintana group.
Haig crossed the line in 23rd place and dropped down to 13th place on GC. With two stages remaining the chance to finish within the top ten is still reachable.
Porte will start tomorrow's penutlimate stage as the race leader with a small 17second advantage.
"The final climb was hard today, Quintana attacked at the bottom and went full. I got a bit carried away and maybe a lack of experience got in the way as I tried to follow Porte and Quintana. In hindsight I should have stayed in the wheels and ridden around the guys that I know I am at the level with.
"I got a bit distanced on the steep part of the climb before we got on more of the undulating terrain. Then I just fought to try and find a group and limit the losses and try and get to the last five kilometres which kicked back up again.
"The idea was for Albasini to get in the break as he has won this stage before. That worked out well as he managed to get into that big break but BMC didn't let it get that far, they chased really hard all day.
"The goal of a top ten is still possible if I have a really good TT but we will wait and see."
Tour de Suisse stage 5 results:
1. Nairo Quintana (Movistar) 4:01
2. Jacob Fugslang (Astana) 0:22
3. Richie Porte (BMC) ST
23. Jack Haig (Mitchelton-SCOTT) 2:33
General classification after stage 5:
1. Richie Porte (BMC) 26:06
2. Nairo Quintana (Movistar) 0:17
3. Wilko Kelderman (Team Sunweb) +0:52
5. Jack Haig (Mitchelton-SCOTT) +2:56
Photos courtesy of Getty Images