In His Own Words: Julian Dean on Tour of Poland Stage 6

Sun 5 Aug 2012

As was the case yesterday, the team objective at the Tour of Poland today was to help Daniel Teklehaimanot retain the climber’s jersey. We knew today was going to be the day that decided who would win the mountains classification because the stage included ten category one climbs. Given the course, it was a matter of putting Dan in the break so he could take the points needed to defend his lead on the penultimate day of racing.

The first lap was pretty hectic. There were a lot of attacks. Groups would go away and come back. Reshuffle and repeat. Dan got in a few moves but unfortunately not in the one that stuck. Five riders went away, and with points going five deep for the mountains classification, the break effectively took Dan out of the competition. He went from first to third just like that. Tomorrow is a flat circuit race to end the seven day race, so there’s no chance for him to regain the jersey.

After the break went away, the bunch settled down. Omega Pharma – Quickstep, with the yellow jersey, took control of the race until the final two laps. Sky took over and the pace was higher once they were in the front. They were looking to position one of their riders on the final lap to take the overall. They almost had it. Sergio Heano (Sky Procycling) was denied victory on the line by Moreno Moser (Liquigas-Cannondale), who moved into the race by virtue of bonus seconds he gained for winning the stage.

While Sky, Liquigas and Omega Pharma - QuickStep focused on the stage win and overall battle, we did whatever we could to save ourselves for the circuit race tomorrow. It was a heavy day. Today was the queen stage, and it included more than 4,000 meters of climbing. Our best chance to get another result comes tomorrow. Everyone on the team made it through stage six, and we’re looking forward to sprinting for Aidis Kruopis in Krakow.