The final day of racing at the Tour de la Provence took the peloton 170.5 kilometers from Avignon to Aix-en-Provence with three categorized climbs. It took many kilometers until the breakaway of the day went up the road and with 38 kilometers to go, the escapees had still more than four minutes over the pack.
The Astana riders stayed in the bunch and helped to close the gap to the front. But the breakaway worked well together, and so they were able to hold on their advantage.
In a thrilling finale, with only 5 seconds gap, the breakaway made it to the line. The first rider, who won the sprint from the reduced bunch, was Astana rider Alexey Lutsenko, crossing the line in fifth place.
There was no change in the general classification, therefore Aleksandr Vlasov finished the race in second place overall and teammate Lutsenko took third. But after today’s performance Alexey Lutsenko won the sprint classification and Aleksandr Vlasov secured the youth classification. The cherry on the top of the cake, the Kazakh team took home the team’s classification.
-We tried to go into the breakaway but the other teams controlled the race all the time. For us the second and third place in the overall ranking, the sprint jersey as well as the youth and team classification are really good results. We came here with young riders and they did a great job, learned a lot and gained some experience and it was a good start into the season. I want to say thank you to the whole team, everyone did a great job here, it always needs a team to achieve results like these. - said Dmitriy Fofonov
- The last kilometer to the finish, we only missed 5 seconds to catch the breakaway, I tried to attack but it was too late and the breakaway made it to the line. It is a pity but at least I tried and took fifth place. But all in all, I am satisfied with my and the team’s performance, the team worked really well together this week and I am looking forward to the upcoming races. – Alexey Lutsenko
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