Tour de Pologne Stage 3: Vakoc Retains Lead After Chaotic Group Arrival
OPQS rider Petr Vakoc remains in yellow, with a 26" after the chaotic bunch sprint finale of 174km Stage 3 of Tour de Pologne on Tuesday.
The original breakaway was brought back with 10km to go, but until the final kilometer no teams were able to secure control of the sprint with organized leadout trains. A crash just before the sprint following some technical corners allowed a small group to get a gap and contest the stage. Theo Bos (Belkin) won the stage, with Luka Mezgec (Giant-Shimano) 2nd, and Michael Matthews (Orica-GreenEDGE) 3rd.
Martin Velits was the top stage finisher for OPQS, in 48th place.
OPQS looks next to 236km Stage 4, with an undulating profile.
"Today was a great feeling with the whole team supporting me as leader," Vakoc said. "I always rode in the middle of my teammates protecting me. It was like a dream. We were always in control today with the breakaway having a small gap. We remained in control even when we entered the finishing circuit. There was, of course, a crash before the final but I'm happy that everyone of the team is OK. For me, this was a good experience for my young career to ride with such great support from my team. Tomorrow is another stage likely for the sprinters, and we will try to defend my jersey once again. Then, we go into the mountains. It won't be easy, but I have nothing to lose and can only try my best to keep this yellow jersey."