Two in a row: Another Podium for BORA – hansgrohe in Spain.
2nd place for Rudi Selig in Clasica de Almeria.
After yesterday’s strong showing of Patrick Konrad in Murcia, today Rudi Selig secured a superb second place in the Clasica de Almeria. In a very long sprint he just missed out the top spot on the podium, being beaten to the line by M. Cort Nielsen (ORS).
Opposite to yesterday’s race in Murcia, today the parkour favoured the fast men. Mainly flat 191kms around Almeria, with one hilly section about half way through the course, promised a sprint finish in the Clasica de Almeria.
Sam Bennett, who wasn’t part of today’s BORA – hansgrohe line-up, won this race back in 2014. Also a former winner is the team’s new Italian signing Matteo Pelucchi, who celebrated in 2011 on the top podium spot. After his strong start to the young season in Mallorca, Matteo was appointed as today’s leader of the team.
Straight from the start a three men breakaway decided to go for early glory in today’s race. Their lead increased rapidly to more than 8 minutes, while the race favourites didn’t panic at all. After about 100km the peloton started to organise the chase, slowly but constantly. Always on top of the action was also BORA – hansgrohe.
With 50k to go the gap was already down to 3 minutes, 30k later their time at the front of the race was finally over. As Matteo Pelucchi didn’t have the best legs today, BORA – hansgrohe changed tactics and decided to enter the final sprint with Rudi Selig.
On the last laps of the finishing circuit in Almeria Orcia-Scott took over control in the peloton for their sprinter M. Cort Nielsen. The pace was high and when the fight for positions started to get a little frantic, a crash happened with P. Ackermann being involved. Still BORA – hansgrohe had C. Pfingsten and M. Schwarzmann to lead-out Rudi. With an early move, 250m from the line, Rudi tried to fool his rivals. But M. Cort Nielsen (ORS) reacted fast and just was able to beat Rudi to the line.
“The team did an excellent job again today. Silvio worked the whole day on the front of the peloton. When we discovered that Matteo had some problems today, we switched tactics to go for Rudi. That worked our really well, Magnus was just a little stronger today. But the second place is a strong result again, and I think the next win is just a matter of time.” – Christian Pömer, sports director
“When we decided to switch tactics, Schwarzi took over control of the lead-out. Unfortunately, Pascal was involved in a crash, but still Christoph rode us into a good position. When Schwarzi dropped me on Magnus’ wheel I thought: go for it. I thought maybe a can surprise him by going early, but he reacted immediately and we sprinted 250m head to head. In the end, he wasn’t faster than me, but could hold the speed a little longer. It was close, but not enough. Still the second place is an excellent result.” – Rudi Selig