Mitchelton-SCOTT control to keep Yates in the race lead on penultimate stage of Tirreno Adriatico

Sun 13 Sep 2020

Mitchelton-SCOTT controlled today’s hot and fast penultimate stage of Tirreno Adriatico to keep race leader Simon Yates safe and in the race lead heading into tomorrow's final stage.

A large breakaway group animated the day, successfully staying away to the finish, with Mathieu van der Poel (Alpecin-Fenix) claiming the stage win in explosive style, passing the solo leader Matteo Fabbro (BORA-hansgrohe) in the last 300metres.

Yates finished the day in sixth place, ten seconds behind the winner and on the same time as his GC rivals ahead of tomorrow’s testing and decisive individual time trial.

Hard start
The day began at a fast and furious pace with the peloton remaining together until after 60km of racing. Finally, the elastic snapped and a large breakaway group consisting of 14 riders was able to escape.

The peloton initially eased up allowing the group to ride out to over five minutes, with no riders posing a threat to the overall classification, before pegging them back to a comfortable distance of two and a half minutes as the race entered the final three hilly finishing circuits.

Explosive finale
As the leading team, Mitchelton-SCOTT took responsibility assisting with the chase to control the distance to the breakaway with the help Astana Pro Team for most of the day.

The breakaway group exploded with two laps to go with riders attacking and riders from the peloton bridging across to the move.

The Australian outfit stayed calm and in control, always with numbers at the front navigating Yates through until the final metres of the stage.

As the line drew closer, the gap to the leaders reduced with the main reduced bunch finishing just 10 second adrift.

Yates heads into tomorrow’s decisive individual time trial stage with a 16-second advantage over Rafal Majka (BORA-hansgrohe) and 39seconds over Geraint Thomas (Ineos Grenadiers).

Simon Yates – Race Leader
“There was nobody dangerous in the break, Astana did a lot of the work and we tried to stay calm. 

"The team did a really good job, they kept it all under control until the very last climb for me and I only touched the wind with 200metres to go so it was a really good job from them and a perfect day for me.

“I would always prefer more time going into a time trial, it is not my favourite event. 16seconds to Rafal (Majka) is not much, it is going to be close and he is obviously going really good.

"We know (Geraint) Thomas is excellent in the time trials so the race definitely isn’t over yet, I don’t know if it is going to be enough time, I will just do my best.”

Tirreno Adriatico – Stage 7 Results:
1. Mathieu van der Poel (Alpecin-Fenix) 4:19:23
2. Ruben Guerreiro (EF Pro Cycling) +0:04
3. Matteo Fabbro (BORA-hansgrohe) +0:04
6. Simon Yates (Mitchelton-SCOTT) +0:10

Tirreno Adriatico – General Classification after Stage 7:
1. Simon Yates (Mitchelton-SCOTT) 31:56:02
2. Rafal Majka (BORA-hansgrohe) +0:16
3. Geraint Thomas (Ineos Grenadiers) +0:39

Photos courtesy of Getty Images.