In the third stage of the Deutschland Tour, it was for the first time that Leopard Pro Cycling was not part of the early breakaway. Szymon Rekita was involved in some attacks later in the stage, but without any luck. In the final sprint, Alexander Krieger crashed, making the strive for a good result mission impossible.
Leopard keen on finishing the Deutschland Tour off well in final stage
Just before noon, stage three of the Deutschland Tour departed in front of the Porta Nigra, in the center of Germany's oldest city Trier. At first, no riders were able to attack since the pace in the peloton was really high, up to 45 kilometers per hour. Things were looking good for Leopard when a group of eight went away with KOM classification leader Gaëtan Pons and Jens Reynders. Unfortunately some teams were not happy with this move and decided to close the gap. Right after this moment, six attackers created a gap without the Leopard guys and the peloton decided that the front group were allowed to go further up the road and one could immediately see the lead increase to four minutes.
Today's stage had five categorized climbs in it and so there were plenty of KOM points up for grabs. One of the guys in front - Robin Carpenter (Rally) - was able to cross the summit of all climbs in first place, causing him to take over the leaders jersey from Leoaprd's Gaëtan Pons. As Quick Step and Bahrain-Merida set a solid pace in the peloton, the leaders were quickly brought back and it was all to play for with the finish line in Merzig approaching. Prior to and on the ascent of the Eller Weg, some new attacks took place - also Leopard's Szymon Rekita was again involved -, but in the closing meters of the race the last attackers were caught. In the final sprint, Alexander Krieger was in a good position for Leopard, but a crash just in front of him caused that he did the same, luckily without any damage. With one more stage to go, Leopard Pro Cycling is eager to give it one final push and complete the Deutschland Tour in a successful and satisfying way.
Markus Zingen, DS: "Luck was not on our side today, altough it looked really good in the beginning with Gaëtan and Jens in the front group, ready to defend the KOM jersey. When they were brought back and a new group went away, we already invested a lot of efforts and so we missed out. As expected, in the remainer of the stage we saw an eliminiation race. Again, Szymon was very strong in the final, trying to go with several moves. Unfortunately, Alexander crashed with 200 meters to go, otherwise we would have again a very top 5 or 10 result today. Hopefully luck will again be with us tomorrow as we ride towards Alexander's home town!"
Result Stage 3
24. Szymon Rekita (POL) s.t.
45. Alexander Krieger (GER) s.t.
86. Gaëtan Pons (LUX) + 9'12"
88. Jan Brockhoff (GER) + 9'18"
93. Jens Reynders (BEL) + 11'10"
106. Mario Spengler (SUI) + 11'10"
General Classification after Stage 3
27. Szymon Rekita (POL) + 0'48"
46. Alexander Krieger (GER) + 4'44"
93. Jan Brockhoff (GER) + 20'15"
97. Gaëtan Pons (LUX) + 23'32"
100. Jens Reynders (BEL) + 25'27"
104. Mario Spengler (SUI) + 25'30"