- First of all, I want to dedicate this victory to my wife, who had a miscarriage of our twins last December. With these three wins, I want to honor them all three. My wife and I went through a very difficult time together, it was very hard. The team supported me all the time in this period, and I’m happy I can reward them as well for this support.
It was a perfect race for us, as everything went exactly how we planned. The team protected me very well until the second part of the climb and then it was up to me to follow my most important rivals. My main goal was to keep the red jersey, but when I saw the last man from the breakaway just in front of me, I gave it my all and took the victory. It was an important and emotional victory for me and the team, and now we focus on tomorrow to secure the overall win, - said Alexey Lutsenko.
- Alexey Lutsenko and the team performed really well today, I just heard he did the climb in new record time. Of course, he had some backwind, but it shows his strength. It’s good to see him developing like this, we’re sure he’ll be ready for the most important goals of his season. For him personally, this is also a great victory, as he went through a difficult time. We gave him all the support and space he needed, because in the first place we are humans and a close team, in the second place we’re a professional cycling team. We’re close to a third overall win here in Oman, so tomorrow we’ll need to be focused again and make sure that Alexey doesn’t get in troubles during the day, - said sports director Dmitriy Fofonov.
The Queen Stage took off from Samayil, to finish after 152 kilometers atop of Al Jabal Al Akhdar (Green Mountain). A breakaway of six riders was created right from the start, creating a gap of a maximum of 6 minutes. One man of this group would lead the race until the final hundred meters, Fabian Grellier. Behind this break, the Astana Pro Team took control in the peloton to protect Alexey Lutsenko. During the decisive climb of the Green Mountain, other teams took over to make the race hard. Alexey Lutsenko was able to follow and a few kilometers before the finish he attacked together with Jesus Herrada and Domenico Pozzovivo.
In the final kilometer, Alexey Lutsenko attacked to overtake Fabian Grellier in the final hundred meters, to win his third stage in this edition of the Tour of Oman. The Kazakh champion is now leading the race with an advantage of 44” seconds on Domenico Pozzovivo and 47” on Jesus Herrada.
Tomorrow is the final stage of the 2019 Tour of Oman, starting in Al Mouj Muscat to finish in Matrah Corniche after 135.5 kilometers. A hilly stage, but normally a stage for the sprinters.
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