Cian Uijtdebroeks (Belgium) won the 7th stage of the Tour de l’Avenir this Friday, decided between Thonon-les-Bains and Saint-François-Longchamp. At the end of 175 kilometers, he was ahead of Davide Piganzoli (Italy) and Michel Hessmann (Germany). Michel Hessmann (Germany) remains in the overall lead (see the rankings).
Find below the reactions collected by DirectVelo.
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“I feel good. I am very happy with this show. I didn’t expect to finish well this morning. The pace is very high. Attacked by Cian (Uijtdebroeks) after five kilometers of climbing, ten terminals from the finish. We are trying to stay on his wheel, but it is very difficult. We tried to manage and reach 2nd and 3rd position with (Michel) Hessmann. I rode with him. I don’t like hard climbs like now. Tomorrow, I think it will be better for me”.
“Better than I expected. I don’t know what to say. I don’t think anyone has good legs because it’s a tough move. I know it’s good for me when the race is tough. We rode very fast on the way down. We made the difference and we continued flat because some contenders for the general classification were dropped. All suffer from tires. On the last climb, I could see that we were tired and we were not printing a very high tempo. (Cian) Uijtdebroeks attacked. I tried to follow a little but he was running too fast. I have to ride at my own pace. I followed the climbers as best I could. (Davide) Piganzoli worked hard and helped me. He deserves the 2nd place. I’m happy to finish 3rd and limit my time loss”.
“Today I feel good. On the last climb, Cian (Uijtdebroeks) attacked ten kilometers from the summit. He is the strongest. We were five runners behind. I stayed with them. Finally, I was running. Now we are two riders well placed for the overall standings with Davide Piganzoli. This is important for the future. Let’s see who feels better on the climb and try to get the best result for the team. I made a mistake two days ago. I’ve wasted a lot of energy for nothing. But I think I’ve recovered and I’m ready to climb”.
“The Germans checked behind the breakaways. Leo Hayter was released immediately on his climb to the Col de Tamié, everyone drove hard on the Madeleine to put him very far tonight. At the start of the climb, the I feel. I even thought that I could not follow the best but in the middle, it got better and better. I am happy to get this Top 10.
At the start of the stage, Arthur (Kluckers) and I were in the best place overall. Arthur is our leader and has to do better than me with Madeleine. I don’t think he had a very good day. A big weekend awaits us today, the goal is, I think, to keep the place in the Top 10 in the general classification.
I know the climb to La Toussuire (in Saturday’s program, editor’s note), and I really like it. I checked the whole stage on Sunday with the team, it might suit me but we have to see how it is in Iseran because during the reconnaissance, with the altitude, I’m not good at all”.
“I still want to score points for the climbers. It’s going very fast. In the first pass, Ewen (Costiou) gave me a hell of a train, so I couldn’t pass it. I left the flat. The descents were quite technical and very slippery, I didn’t take any risks. I got back to the breakaway.
I rarely see that, riding fast and not leaving a gap. On a stage like this, you have to leave in 5 minutes. The Germans are strong. I heard they went out at six o’clock on a bump. It’s still amazing. They returned one minute to the Col de Tamié. After that, we have no room for maneuver.
I wouldn’t have gone to the breakaways if I hadn’t had the jersey. Still a goal, I’m fighting again today (Friday). In the last throw, I was a bit disappointed by some spectators who called me a zero, that I didn’t get anywhere when I had the best climber’s jersey. I took at least ten. I was in the back but they didn’t know about my previous work. I don’t care, but I still almost turn around to find someone who told me something that wasn’t right. It was always a little frustrating, but I got through it.
Mr LE BERRE