Bookwalter & Hamilton the highest finishers on a hard day at the men’s Clásica San Sebastián

Sat 3 Aug 2019

Today’s Clásica San Sebastián was a hard one as a high pace on the penultimate climb saw the peloton fragment with American Brent Bookwalter and Australian Lucas Hamilton the highest finishers for Mitchelton-SCOTT.

The two Mitchelton-SCOTT riders finished the long day in 23rd and 24th place respectively behind the eventual solo winner Remo Evenepoel (Deceuninck-Quickstep).

The first move

The lengthy 227kilometre one-day classic began with a group of eight-riders escaping and opening up a three-minute advantage in the first 40kilometres.

With a long way to go and plenty of climbs to come, the peloton were happy to let the group stay ahead until they naturally returned to the peloton, after dropping from the group one-by-one over the climbs.

The race heats up

With 75kilometres remaining on a new climb for 2019, Erlaitz, Movistar Team picked up the pace and the main peloton quickly began to reduce and just one-rider, Fernando Barcelo (Murias Team), remained ahead.

Finally with 51kilometres remaining Barcelo was caught and fresh attacks began to fly. Movistar Team kept the pace hight again up the penultimate climb the Mendizorrotz which saw the peloton continue to reduce. 

Hamilton and Bookwalter remained in the group and in contention for the Australian outfit but it wasn’t to be for Simon Yates like many other riders coming straight off a busy Tour de France.

The winning move came just before the final climb, as Evenepoel got away with Toms Skujins (Trek-Segafredo) and later went on to attack and powered away to take a solo victory.

A chase group followed with the two Mitchelton-SCOTT riders finally finishing in the next main group that arrived to the finish.

Lucas Hamilton

“If we can take anything out of it today it is that we always had numbers there. If anybody was on a good day then we were ready and prepared to put it on the line but it just didn’t work out that way for us today.

“For me personaly it is my first race back in a while, so as soon as the race got really hard I didn’t feel that great, but I survived that first climb but I knew for the second time I was already at my limit. It was hot out there too today which I think the big difference.”

Laurenzo Lapage - Sport Director

"All the guys were really good today, we always had numbers, everybody was there ready to help but in the end the leaders just weren't with the legs. It's normal, it is less than one week since the Tour and I think you could see today many guys coming from the Tour were a bit tired.

"The course this year was also a bit harder with the new climb, but I think really today we were good, guys were climbing well and helping and the guys who haven't raced for a while, you could see they were fresh."

Clásica San Sebastián Men’s Results:

1. Remo Evenepoel (Deceuninck-Quickstep) 5:44:27
2. Greg van Avermaet (CCC Team) +0:38
3. Marc Hirschi (Team Sunweb) ST
23. Brent Bookwalter (Mitchelton-SCOTT) +1:22

Photos courtesy of Getty Images