Yates and Impey finish in reduced bunch on stage 5 of Tour de FranceWed 11 Jul 2018
Mitchelton-SCOTT leader Adam Yates and South African champion Daryl Impey have finished in the front group on stage five of the Tour de France, which proved to be another day where positioning in the final was crucial.
Touted as a ‘mini Amstel Gold Race’, the stage presented hilly terrain for the first time this Tour de France with stage winner Peter Sagan (Bora Hansgrohe) too good for a reduced bunch of opportunists and general classification contenders.
Hill roads and narrow lanes
Whilst the first half of racing provided some opportunities to relax, Mitchelton-SCOTT moved leader Adam Yates closer to the front to second half of the action, after the feedzone.
Hilly terrain and narrow roads had the peloton on high alert and made positioning key, but thankfully, and with the help of as fast pace and spread out peloton, there was little mishap throughout the stage.
Seven set tone
After a short battle, seven riders formed the breakaway as BMC Racing Team headed straight to the front to defend the yellow jersey.
Bora-Hansgrohe joined them half way through the stage to support eventualy winner Peter Sagan, before Team Sky took up some of the pace setting to keep their leaders out of trouble and end the day of the escapees with five kilometres to go.
Philippe Gilbert (Quickstep Floors) was the first to attack but he was quickly covered by Greg Van Avermaet (BMC Racing Team) who sensed his jersey was under threat.
The yellow jersey found himself at the front to early as a result as Sagan and Sonny Colbrelli (Bahrain-Merida) came from the box seat behind to sprint it out for the victory.
Mitchelton-SCOTT duo Impey and Yates were not in contention for the stage but positioned themselves well to ensure they finished on the small bunch finish time.
“Today was another tricky stage, probably the hardest of the race so far, but we came through without any problems. The guys looked after me like always so that I can save as much energy as possible, and now it’s another day ticked off.”
“Tomorrow is harder again. The last time we finished up Mur de Bretagne in 2015 I was in the top ten and with the extra lap of the climb it’s even better for the general classification riders.
“It’s the only finish of the first nine stages that suits me on paper so it’ll be good to actually get a gauge on who is in good condition, and also get a feeling of my own condition.”
Tour de France – Stage 5 Results:
1. Peter Sagan (Bora-Hansgrohe) 4:48:06
2. Sonny Colbrelli (Bahrain-Merida) ST
3. Philippe Gilbert (Quiskstep Floors) ST
Tour de France – General Classification after Stage 5:
1. Greg Van Avermaet (BMC Racing Team) 18:22:00
2. Tejay Van Garderen (BMC Racing Team) +0:02
3. Pilippe Gilbert (Quickstep Floors) +0:03
Photo courtesy of Getty Images.