Schachmann wins and reinforces his leadership in the Basque Country
The ending was named after Julian Alaphilippe. It was not a stage for pure sprints, it was an arrival of those who enjoy runners like the French, with a gentle slope but enough to discard the sprinters. But Alaphilippe's career had twisted before. Same as Enric Mas, Omar Fraile or Geraint Thomas. All were hit by a tremendous collective fall that separated them from the fight six kilometers to the finish line. One of the most affected was the Frenchman, who entered twelve minutes from Schachmann. Enric Mas had entered earlier, but too far away to think about the General's dispute.
The winner and the leader are the same person, Maximilian Schachmann, who got rid of the fall. "I have not seen it, I've only heard it, I was protected with my partner Jay [McCarthy] among the top ten of group. We have been able to avoid it and I hope that none of those affected have suffered serious injuries, "he explained after the stage.
The German started strongly without waiting at the end. His main rivals had been eliminated and his legs responded. Only Ulissi and Battaglin followed him, but they could never discuss the victory. Schachmann has won two of the three stages that have been played and he already thinks about the possible final victory on Saturday. But without exaggerated optimism. "The last two days I felt very good, but I am aware that I am facing the best climbers in the world and it will not be easy to defend the jersey, we have a very strong team and we are going to fight for it," he admits.
Your rivals have changed. The two possible leaders of the DeCeuninck, Mas and Alaphilippe, went to the ground, and now it is Jon Izagirre who is closest to the leader. The little Izagirre was fourth in the finish and now he is second in the general to 33 seconds. Landa showed signs of improvement. He was twelfth in the classification of the day and is seventh overall. Although at one minute and sixteen seconds.