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Tour de Romandie - Pasqualon fourth [29-04-21 08:33 by staff] 

Pasqualon fourth after a strong sprint

After yesterday's prologue, it was time for the first stage of Tour de Romandie (2.UWT, 27/04-02/05). The riders rode 168 kilometers between Aigle, home to the UCI, and Martigny, where the organization had mapped out a local tour with two climbs: Produit (2.6 km, 7.2%) and Chamoson (2.1 km, 6.2%). The riders had to tackle these ascents four times each. After the last climb of the Chamoson, another 22 flat kilometers led them to the finish line in Martigny.

Today’s stage had a fairly traditional scenario. Six riders were in front all day but their attempt didn’t work out as they wished. The last one of them was caught a little more than twenty kilometers from the finish line. That’s when a group of eighty riders prepared themselves for a sprint in the area where the world championships of last year were supposed to take place.

With four riders we were well presented in that group. Jan Bakelants, Andrea Pasqualon, Simone Petilli, Rein Taaramäe and Louis Meintjes were still there. On wet roads, our fast man Pasqualon was well positioned by his Intermarché-Wanty Gobert Matériaux teammates. He did a great job in the sprint and took the fourth place. Peter Sagan (Bora) won, Rohan Dennis (Ineos) remains the leader in the general classification.

Tomorrow's stage is 165 kilometers from La Neuveville to Saint-Imier. Especially the second part of the stage promises to be difficult. Two sturdy hills await there. With just under fifty kilometers to go, it’s time for Les Pontins (4.1 km at 8.4%). After the descent and a short valley follows La Vue-des-Alpes (7.8 kilometers at 6.7%). This is followed by another seventeen kilometers, mainly descending, until the arrival in Saint-Imier.

Andrea Pasqualon :
"Even if the profile seemed favorable for a sprint, there was 2000 meters of elevation and it was a very hard stage. I benefited from the team's help throughout the stage, and thanks to the work that we did during 20 days in Sierra Nevada, I could deal with the accumulation of climbing. I still felt strong in the final, Jan (Bakelants), Simone (Petilli) and Rein (Taaramäe) ideally placed me in Sagan's wheel. I am happy with this fourth place, behind riders who come out of the classics and have a better race rhythm. Happy also because I know I'm not at the peak of my sprinting after the altitude training, where I mainly worked on resistance and climbs. But I feel that we are ready and strong collectively on this Tour de Romandie."

Hilaire Van der Schueren (directeur sportif) :
“It was a very good day for us. Not only because Andrea Pasqualon sprints to a fine fourth place, but also because we had five riders in the first group. All the guys we expected to be in a group like this, were there. And although most of them were climbers, they did not hesitate to help Andrea for the sprint. That's how we roll as a team, we help each other where we can. Today's stage was not to be underestimated, especially if all of our riders joined from an altitude training camp. So I am very satisfied with the performances that I have seen today, and it's a good sign for things to come."

Stage 2 :
1. Peter Sagan
2. Sonny Colbrelli
3. Patrick Bevin
4. Andrea Pasqualon
13. Jan Bakelants
55. Simone Petilli
58. Rein Taaramäe
75. Louis Meintjes
107. Jan Hirt +3:34
136. Riccardo Minali +16:03

Provisional GC :
1. Rohan Dennis
2. Geraint Thomas +9
3. Richie Porte +9
46. Jan Bakelants +30
56. Andrea Pasqualon +33
61. Rein Taaramaë +34
68. Louis Meintjes +37
69. Simone Petilli +37
106. Jan Hirt +4:27
139. Riccardo Minali +17:22

::Media | Intermarché - Wanty - Gobert Matériaux - Press Release::

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