Simon Yates concludes the 2017 edition of Paris-Nice with a top ten overallSun 12 Mar 2017
Stage six winner Simon Yates fought hard on a tough final stage in Paris-Nice to place 15th on the stage and secure a top ten finish on the general classification.
The day concluded with a small breakaway group staying away to the finish line with David De la Cruz (Quick-Step Floors) claiming the victory with Yates in the chase group finishing just 21seconds behind.
The stage wraps up a successful week for the team, achieving the goal of a top ten finish overall and the added bonus of a stage win.
“The way Simon has raced the past two-days was really great after his tough day on stage six with the solo victory,” explained sport director Laurenzo Lapage. “He showed today and yesterday he was always fighting and today he was able to move up to ninth overall.”
“Today was really hard but he was still there in the end with the best guys.
“A stage win and a top ten is something that if we said we would achieve before the race, then yes, of course we are happy with that.”
After a rough start to the race with difficult weather conditions, Lapage expressed how the whole team rode together very well in support of Simon in achieving the overall placing.
“The first days of this race were really hard and for sure the guys will all come out better from this week,” Lapage continued. “We had classics guys here like Jens Keukeleire and Mat Hayman, so for sure it has been good for them and they all worked really well.”
“The days the guys could support Simon they all did that, so I am very happy with that. All the riders did the work they needed to do for us to achieve this top ten finish.”
How it happened:
After two tough previous stages, the final stage of Paris-Nice was no easier with five category climbs but with a welcomed shorter distance of 115kilometres.
The day began with five riders breaking free, followed by a further 19riders successfully bridging across to make a leading group of 24riders. The group rode out to a maximum advantage of two minutes and 20seconds.
On the penultimate first category climb, the majority of the breakaway were swallowed up, leaving just four riders at the front as Contador (Trek-Segafredo) attacked, bringing a small group across to form a new leading bunch.
With the pace on Yates found himself in a group with the current race leader Sergio Henao (Team Sky) one minute behind with 40kilometres to go.
On the Col d’eze, the final first category climb of the race, averaging out at 7.8metres the chase was on with the overall race leader under pressure.
The time gap significantly dropped but it wasn’t enough as the leaders stayed away with De la Cruz taking the stage victory. Henao was able to defend his overall race lead by just two seconds, making for an exhilarating finish to the eight-day tour.
The day concludes a successful week for the team with Yates’ impressive solo victory on stage six and a ninth place overall in the general classification.
Paris-Nice stage eight results:
1. David De la Cruz (Quick-Step Floors) 2:48:53
2. Alberto Contador (Trek-Segafredo) St
3. Marc Soler (Movistar) +0:05
15. Simon Yates (ORICA-SCOTT) +0:21
General classification after eight:
1. Sergio Henao (Team Sky) 29:50:29
2. Alberto Contador (Trek-Segafredo) +0:02
2. Daniel Martin (Quick-Step Floors) +0:30
9. Simon Yates (ORICA-SCOTT) +4:39
Photos courtesy of ©TDWsport.com