Daryl Impey Well-Poised for Bayern Rundfarht Overall PodiumFri 24 May 2013
Aidis Kruopis was the highest finisher for ORICA-GreenEDGE in sixth place on stage three of Bayern Rundfahrt. Gerald Ciolek (MTN Quebeka) claimed victory over Arnaud Demare (FDJ) and Heinrich Haussler (IAM Cycling) in the bunch sprint to the line. Ciolek’s win puts him in the tour lead by 6” ahead of overnight race leader Daryl Impey who finished 13th on Friday.
Early in the racing action, a group of three riders escaped over the first categorised climb of the day. Blel Kadri (AG2R), Ruben Moreno (Euskaltel-Euskadi) and Jerome Cousin (Europcar) worked together to nudge their gap to over six minutes before ORICA-GreenEDGE and Team Sky began working together in the peloton to control the gap.
When the lead group’s gap had been reduced to one minute, Kadri attempted a solo run to the finish. The anxious peloton reeled him back in on the final climb of the day with about 20 kilometres left to race, and so the scene was set for a bunch sprint into Kelheim.
“The boys, in particular Stuey [Stuart O’Grady], did a lot of work on the front to control the break and eventually bring them back into the peloton,” said Sport Director Laurenzo Lapage.
“There were some hilly parts before we hit the finishing circuits,” added Lapage. “The racing was aggressive as riders continued attacking, but the boys did a great job of controlling the bunch.”
“The goal for today was to set up Aidis for the sprint,” Lapage continued. “We knew today’s finish wasn’t good for Daryl. In hopes of keeping Daryl in the race lead, we needed to soak up some of the bonus time at the finish.”
Rather than sprint for the stage victory, Impey assisted his teammate in the finish.
“The last kilometre was really dangerous,” noted Lapage. “Daryl did a really good lead out for Aidis, but Ciolek was too fast today so he got the time bonus needed to put him in the overall lead.”
With a small spread amongst the overall contenders, the individual time trial may prove decisive.
“We are in a good position for tomorrow,” said Lapage. “Daryl is still in second overall, and I think we will have good news after the stage four time trial. Daryl for sure can finish on the podium here.”