Quiet day for Etixx – Quick-Step in San Luis
Following yesterday's crash, the riders of the team went for a smooth stage on a day which provided one last battle for the overall standings.
Eduard Grosu (Nippo-Vini Fantini), Juan Magallanes (Mexico National Team) and Matej Mohoric (Lampre-Merida) were the only riders who decided to go into the break at the Tour de San Luis, knowing their chances of making it until the end in the front were slim to inexistent, with the top climbers eyeing the Filo Sierras Comechingones for one final chance to improve their general classification. As expected, the peloton pushed hard in the final 40 kilometers and caught the escapees on the slopes of Mirador del Sol, despite the gap exceeding seven minutes at one point.
The strong headwind made attacks almost impossible for a while, before Rodolfo Torres tried his luck and got a good gap which it didn’t last for long, as the cyclist of Androni Giocattoli-Sidermec was reeled in by a group which included Dayer and Nairo Quintana (Movistar), Eduardo Sepulveda (Fortuneo-Vital Concept) and Miguel Angel Lopez (Astana). Inside the last three kilometers, the Quintana brothers and Lopez surged clear, the latter scoring the victory at the top of Filo Sierras Comechingones. Third on the line, Dayer Quintana got to climb to the podium after stage 6 in order to don the green jersey, and is now virtual winner of the race, considering the last day will be an affair of the sprinters.
The Etixx – Quick-Step riders still in the Tour de San Luis – Maximiliano Richeze, Fabio Sabatini, Stijn Vandenbergh and Lukasz Wisniowski – had an off-day and took it easy in order to recover following Friday’s crash, which led to the retirement of Rodrigo Contreras and stage 2 winner Fernando Gaviria, both injured in that pile-up. All four finished safely and will now turn their attention to stage 7 (San Luis – San Luis, 119.6 kilometers), the last of the race.
©Tim De Waele