For three riders of Astana Proteam today’s stage became a debut: Zhandos Bizhigitov, Riccardo Minali and Truls Korsaeth debuted at a professional level.
- It was a normal stage – a group of riders broke away almost from the start, while the peloton did not give them too much space. In general, the race itself started with only 25 km to go. I think, it was a good race and I am happy with my debut as a professional rider. Of course, you can feel the level of competition – speed and style of racing are absolutely different. In the final we tried to help Riccardo Minali to get a better position for sprint. Think, he did a good debut as well, - explained Zhandos Bizhigitov.
Riccardo Minali was the rider, who opened the final sprint. Thus, he did 13th in a stage won by German rider Marcel Kittel.
- The day was quietly enough, we managed to pass it without crashes or flat tires. A break of 5 riders went away early in the race, but the peloton controlled the situation until the finish. Then, all turned for a bunch sprint. Today we wanted to try our sprint with young Riccardo Minali. The result is not the highest one, but there are still four days, we will keep on fighting in the next days, - said sports director Alexandr Shefer.
Tomorrow will be held the second stage of the race – 188 km from DIMC to Ras al Khaimah.
Photo credit: © BettiniPhoto