Paris-Nice: Valverde wins stage 3, Wiggins stays in Yellow


Spanish climber Alejandro Valverde has won stage 3 of the Paris-Nice while Bradley Wiggins hung onto the yellow jesey despite the gap being close with the time bonuses.

RELATED LINK: Stage 1 Report | Stage 2 Report |

Alejandro Valverde’s superb season has continued with his fourth win of the year on the third stage of Paris-Nice, 194 kilometers after departing from Vierzon. The final five kilometres of the stage were uphill which played into Valverde’s hands and while Gerrans of Aussie team GreenEdge ran him close, the Spanish rider seemed in full control.

His win has helped the Movistar rider to climb up to sixth place, 20 seconds down on Wiggins who leads the race by six seconds from American Levi Leipheimer of the Omega Pharma – Quickstep team with Tejay Van Garderen of BMC Racing Team in third, only 11 seconds off the lead.

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Alejandro Valverde – “I really must thank my team-mates who did a phenomenal job all day and in the finale. I’m glad to have won this because it was a great fight. Of course I think about final victory but for now, I’m just glad I won this. I was in the front group yesterday and my sensations since the start have been great. We’ll see.”

Bradley Wiggins – “It was cold out there, a lot of guys were struggling. It’s another day down. I’m just looking to stay safe and keep the guys like Levi around me. Alejandro won today and he is getting closer too. The next couple of days we’re going to try and control as best as possible. But six seconds is hard to defend and there is a strong possibility that we can lose the jersey with a bonification here or there. If we can stay in touch until the Col d’Eze, we can play it cool.”

Pictured on the rollers immediately after the finish, Wiggins revealed that the warm-down, which is standard practice after a tough finish, is all part of aiding the recovery process. “With it being such a hard effort at the end there it wouldn’t have done me any good just stopping immediately so a 10 minute session on the turbo just helps the recovery a bit, especially before the long drive back to the hotel tonight,” he added.

The race…
Resplendent in yellow, Bradley Wiggins was able to let his Team Sky squad control the race for the bulk of the day confident they had the strength to bring back the breakaway as the race got ever closer to the finish. Helped by the Movistar team, the break’s time out front was numbered and they were all soon back in the peloton and out the other side as the GC contenders and stage hopefuls went into battle.

The final five kilometres up to the finish proved to be tough, too tough for riders such as Ivan Basso (Liquigas) and last year’s race winner Tony Martin (Omega Pharma-Quickstep) who were shelled out of the back of the peloton.

Sean Yates of Team Sky told Sky Sports News afterwards “The conditions were not as testing as yesterday. Obviously Bradley had the leader’s jersey and it was about defending that. The boys did that really well. Valverde took out the stage win, picked up a few bonus seconds and therefore got a bit closer (to the lead). From Brad’s point of view and the form he’s shown here, we know there’s a lot more to come. It’s a little scary how good he is at this time of year when you think about what he will be capable of in July.”

“Stage four should be pretty similar to today. We’ll keep defending the jersey. It’s quite a tough final. The risk is if Valverde takes another win and picks up some more bonus seconds. It’s just a question of staying safe, looking after Bradley and looking towards the finish of stage five which I think will make a difference. If we can keep defending the jersey then it’s down to Bradley on the Col d’Èze in Nice on Sunday.”

RESULTS

Stage 3
1 Alejandro Valverde Movistar Team 04:36:19
2 Simon Gerrans GreenEdge Cycling Team @ same time
3 Gianni Meersman Lotto – Belisol Team @ same time
4 Luis Leon Sanchez Gil Rabobank Cycling Team @ same time
5 Xavier Florencio Katusha Team @ same time
6 Eros Capecchi Liquigas – Cannondale @ same time
7 Maxime Monfort RadioShack – Nissan @ same time
8 Jonathan Hivert Saur – Sojasun @ same time
9 Francesco Gavazzi Astana Pro Team @ same time
10 Lieuwe Westra Vacansoleil – DCM Pro Cycling Team @ same time
11 Jeremie Galland Saur – Sojasun @ same time
12 Julien Simon Saur – Sojasun @ same time
13 Guillaume Levarlet Saur – Sojasun @ same time
14 Tejay Van Garderen BMC Racing Team @ same time
15 Blel Kadri Ag2R – La Mondiale @ same time
16 Levi Leipheimer Omega Pharma – Quickstep @ same time
17 Eduard Vorganov Katusha Team @ same time
18 Damiano Cunego Lampre – ISD @ same time
19 Rigoberto Uran Sky Procycling @ same time
20 Bradley Wiggins Sky Procycling @ same time
21 Simon Spilak Katusha Team @ same time
22 Thomas Voeckler Europcar @ same time
23 Mickael Cherel Ag2R – La Mondiale @ same time
24 Robert Kiserlovski Astana Pro Team @ same time
25 Ángel Vicioso Arcos Katusha Team @ same time
26 Yukiya Arashiro Europcar @ same time
27 Simon Geschke 1t4i @ same time
28 Maxime Bouet Ag2R – La Mondiale @ same time
29 Sylvain Chavanel Omega Pharma – Quickstep @ same time
30 Anthony Geslin Equipe Cycliste FDJ – BigMat @ same time
31 Daniele Pietropolli Lampre – ISD @ same time
32 Daniel Navarro Garcia Team Saxo Bank @ same time
33 Sandy Casar Equipe Cycliste FDJ – BigMat @ same time
34 Denis Menchov Katusha Team @ same time
35 Janez Brajkovic Astana Pro Team @ same time
36 Giampaolo Caruso Katusha Team @ same time
37 Thomas De Gendt Vacansoleil – DCM Pro Cycling Team @ same time
38 Arnold Jeannesson Equipe Cycliste FDJ – BigMat @ same time
39 Dmitriy Fofonov Astana Pro Team @ same time
40 David Lelay Saur – Sojasun @ same time
41 Dries Devenyns Omega Pharma – Quickstep @ same time
42 Jose Joaquin Rojas Gil Movistar Team @ same time
43 Frank Schleck RadioShack – Nissan @ same time
44 Sylvester Szmyd Liquigas – Cannondale @ same time
45 J̩rome Coppel Saur РSojasun @ same time
46 Jens Voigt RadioShack – Nissan @ same time
47 Carlos Barredo Llamazales Rabobank Cycling Team @ same time
48 Nicolas Roche Ag2R – La Mondiale @ same time
49 Davide Malacarne Europcar @ same time
50 Amaël Moinard BMC Racing Team @ same time
51 Bart De Clercq Lotto – Belisol Team @ same time
52 J̩r̩my Roy Equipe Cycliste FDJ РBigMat @ same time
53 Diego Ulissi Lampre – ISD @ same time
54 Gustav Erik Larsson Vacansoleil – DCM Pro Cycling Team @ same time
55 R̩mi Pauriol Equipe Cycliste FDJ РBigMat @ same time
56 Igor Anton Hernandez Euskaltel – Euskadi @ same time
57 Thomas Dekker Team Garmin – Barracuda @ same time
58 Leonardo Bertagnolli Lampre – ISD @ same time
59 Laurens Ten Dam Rabobank Cycling Team @ same time
60 Giovanni Bernaudeau Europcar @ same time
61 Evgeni Petrov Astana Pro Team @ same time
62 Pierrick Fedrigo Equipe Cycliste FDJ – BigMat @ same time
63 David Arroyo Duran Movistar Team 00:12
64 R̩my Di Gregorio Cofidis РLe Credit En Ligne @ same time
65 Christian Knees Sky Procycling @ same time
66 Vincent Jerome Europcar @ same time
67 Samuel Dumoulin Cofidis – Le Credit En Ligne @ same time
68 Gorka Izagirre Insausti Euskaltel – Euskadi @ same time
69 Kevin Seeldraeyers Astana Pro Team 00:18
70 Brent Bookwalter BMC Racing Team 00:21
71 Markel Irizar Aranburu RadioShack – Nissan 00:23
72 S̩bastien Minard Ag2R РLa Mondiale @ same time
73 Heinrich Haussler Team Garmin – Barracuda @ same time
74 Grega Bole Lampre – ISD @ same time
75 Hubert Dupont Ag2R – La Mondiale @ same time
76 Frederik Veuchelen Vacansoleil – DCM Pro Cycling Team 00:28
77 Richie Porte Sky Procycling @ same time
78 Sergey Lagutin Vacansoleil – DCM Pro Cycling Team @ same time
79 Dennis Van Winden Rabobank Cycling Team 00:33
80 Alexandre Geniez 1t4i @ same time
81 David Lopez Garcia Movistar Team 00:34
82 Bjorn Leukemans Vacansoleil – DCM Pro Cycling Team 00:37
83 Bauke Mollema Rabobank Cycling Team 00:40
84 Simon Clarke GreenEdge Cycling Team 00:48
85 Jean-christophe Peraud Ag2R – La Mondiale @ same time
86 David Moncouti̩ Cofidis РLe Credit En Ligne @ same time
87 Michael Albasini GreenEdge Cycling Team 00:51
88 Wesley Sulzberger GreenEdge Cycling Team 00:53
89 Javier Moreno Bazan Movistar Team 00:57
90 Gaetan Bille Lotto – Belisol Team 01:04
91 Andr̩as Kl̦den RadioShack РNissan @ same time
92 Stijn Vandenbergh Omega Pharma – Quickstep 01:09
93 C̩dric Pineau Equipe Cycliste FDJ РBigMat @ same time
94 Romain Feillu Vacansoleil – DCM Pro Cycling Team 01:23
95 Kanstantsin Siutsou Sky Procycling 01:25
96 Pello Bilbao Lopez De Armienta Euskaltel – Euskadi @ same time
97 Vasil Kiryienka Movistar Team @ same time
98 Romain Sicard Euskaltel – Euskadi @ same time
99 Anders Lund Team Saxo Bank @ same time
100 Alexandre Pichot Europcar @ same time
101 Tony Martin Omega Pharma – Quickstep 01:45
102 Paolo Longho Borghini Liquigas – Cannondale 01:46
103 Anthony Ravard Ag2R – La Mondiale @ same time
104 Kris Boeckmans Vacansoleil – DCM Pro Cycling Team @ same time
105 Ivan Basso Liquigas – Cannondale @ same time
106 Daniele Righi Lampre – ISD @ same time
107 Jan Bakelants RadioShack – Nissan @ same time
108 Adam Leigh Howard GreenEdge Cycling Team 02:06
109 Mickael Buffaz Cofidis – Le Credit En Ligne @ same time
110 Koen De Kort 1t4i @ same time
111 Joost Posthuma RadioShack – Nissan @ same time
112 Maarten Neyens Lotto – Belisol Team @ same time
113 Danilo Wyss BMC Racing Team @ same time
114 Pierre Cazaux Euskaltel – Euskadi @ same time
115 Jens Keukeleire GreenEdge Cycling Team 02:13
116 Marcus Burghardt BMC Racing Team 02:57
117 José Ivan Gutierrez Palacios Movistar Team 03:16
118 Yauheni Hutarovich Equipe Cycliste FDJ – BigMat 03:17
119 Maarten Wynants Rabobank Cycling Team @ same time
120 Geraint Thomas Sky Procycling @ same time
121 Adam Hansen Lotto – Belisol Team 03:20
122 Rein Taaramäe Cofidis – Le Credit En Ligne 03:40
123 Mark Renshaw Rabobank Cycling Team 04:41
124 Sep Vanmarcke Team Garmin – Barracuda @ same time
125 Elia Viviani Liquigas – Cannondale @ same time
126 Nikolas Maes Omega Pharma – Quickstep 04:44
127 Kevin De Weert Omega Pharma – Quickstep @ same time
128 Tom Boonen Omega Pharma – Quickstep @ same time
129 Gregory Henderson Lotto – Belisol Team @ same time
130 John Degenkolb 1t4i @ same time
131 Yannick Talabardon Saur – Sojasun @ same time
132 Luis Angel Mate Mardones Cofidis – Le Credit En Ligne @ same time
133 Jan Ghyselinck Cofidis – Le Credit En Ligne @ same time
134 Tristan Valentin Cofidis – Le Credit En Ligne @ same time
135 Matteo Bono Lampre – ISD @ same time
136 Kasper Larsen Klostergaard Team Saxo Bank @ same time
137 Jimmy Engoulvent Saur – Sojasun 05:58
138 Sébastien Chavanel Europcar @ same time
139 Martijn Maaskant Team Garmin – Barracuda 06:03
140 Tom Veelers 1t4i @ same time

Overall
1 Bradley Wiggins Sky Procycling 09:09:51
2 Levi Leipheimer Omega Pharma – Quickstep 00:06
3 Tejay Van Garderen BMC Racing Team 00:11
4 Sylvain Chavanel Omega Pharma – Quickstep 00:14
5 Maxime Monfort RadioShack – Nissan 00:18
6 Alejandro Valverde Belmonte Movistar Team 00:20
7 Lieuwe Westra Vacansoleil – DCM Pro Cycling Team 00:22
8 Jose Joaquin Rojas Gil Movistar Team 00:29
9 Simon Spilak Katusha Team 00:33
10 Robert Kiserlovski Astana Pro Team 00:36
11 Francesco Gavazzi Astana Pro Team 00:44
12 Arnold Jeannesson Equipe Cycliste FDJ – BigMat 00:52
13 Ángel Vicioso Arcos Katusha Team 00:54
14 Gustav Erik Larsson Vacansoleil – DCM Pro Cycling Team 02:31
15 R̩mi Pauriol Equipe Cycliste FDJ РBigMat 02:46
16 J̩rome Coppel Saur РSojasun @ same time
17 Jens Voigt RadioShack – Nissan 02:48
18 Simon Gerrans GreenEdge Cycling Team @ same time
19 Gianni Meersman Lotto – Belisol Team 02:50
20 Maxime Bouet Ag2R – La Mondiale 02:54
21 J̩r̩my Roy Equipe Cycliste FDJ РBigMat @ same time
22 Anthony Ravard Ag2R – La Mondiale 02:56
23 Blel Kadri Ag2R – La Mondiale 02:57
24 Luis Leon Sanchez Gil Rabobank Cycling Team 03:00
25 Laurens Ten Dam Rabobank Cycling Team 03:01
26 Sandy Casar Equipe Cycliste FDJ – BigMat 03:05
27 Evgeni Petrov Astana Pro Team 03:06
28 Daniel Navarro Garcia Team Saxo Bank 03:07
29 Julien Simon Saur – Sojasun 03:08
30 Christian Knees Sky Procycling 03:09

 

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