Stage 6: Vuelta

 Tomasz Marczynski wins the stage as Contador goes on the attack and Froome seems to lack challengers for the GC

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Stage 6: Vuelta

Lotto Soudal Press Release

Tomasz Marczynski has won the sixth stage of La Vuelta, between Vila-real and Sagunt whilst Alberto Contador yet again fired up the GC battle with an attacking ride!

Photo: @lavuelta

Four climbs of third category and one of second category had to be overcome.

After lots of attempts, thirty-seven riders finally established the day’s breakaway, with among others Tomasz Marczynski and Maxime Monfort. The front group’s tempo was really high in the first part of the race, and the group was consequently reduced to twenty-eight riders.

With less than hundred kilometres to go, Monfort and Jungels attacked but the duo was reeled in thirty kilometres later. Marczynski and Mas dropped the rest of the breakaway on the Puerto del Garbí, the last climb of the day with top at 36 kilometres from the end, and Marczynski crossed the top first.

They were later joined by Poljanski and their advantage quickly reached thirty-six seconds. The three riders collaborated perfectly to stay up front despite the intense fight between the GC riders in the chasing group. Marczynski put his experience to good use in the last kilometre and he found himself in an ideal position to launch his sprint. The Pole crossed the line in first place and took a fantastic stage win for the team. … continued after advert


Tomasz Marczynski: “I am incredibly happy with this victory! I have won a few national titles in the past, but a stage victory in a Grand Tour is a big achievement. It is extra special for me because I have been living in Spain for a few years now, so I consider this to be a home race.”

“After about forty kilometres of racing I accelerated uphill and I rode alone in front for about five kilometres. Once I saw that a group of about fifteen riders had been formed behind me, I decided to wait. Yesterday we had missed the opportunity and today we really had to have a rider in the break, now we had two with Maxime and me.”

“After Maxime had been reeled in, the group started falling apart. On the last climb the GC riders picked up the pace, but I was motivated to survive. I also had a back-up plan: If we would have been caught, I still would have sprinted at the end. But it’s easier to beat two riders than a larger group, so I was determined not to get caught. When we were left with three the cooperation ran smoothly. In the last kilometre I didn’t pull anymore, I got in position for the sprint. I was really focussed and I believed I could finish it off.”

“I really want to thank Lotto Soudal for giving me the opportunity to let me be part of one of the best teams in the world and to keep confidence in me after last season where health issues kept me from setting good results. I really appreciate this and I am very happy I could give the team such a wonderful victory.”

“I hope this is the beginning of an even more successful Vuelta for me and the team. There are several more opportunities for breakaways and I will definitely try again. I have specifically marked the stage to the Sierra Nevada, close to where I live.

When coming to the Vuelta, I felt the condition was good after a three-week altitude training camp and Tour de Pologne where I got some race rhythm. After Poland I trained again on altitude. I was confident that I could win a stage here and now I did. I hope more beautiful moments will come for our team this Vuelta.”

Other Reactions

Vintage Alberto Contador (Trek Segafredo).”It was a very demanding stage that didn’t leave us with one moment to breathe, so for me it looked like the perfect stage to try to take some competitors out of GC,” explained Contador. “I knew that even if some riders came with me, it could be interesting,” continued Contador. “To be honest, I thought there would be more of a fight. Some teams were really in the advantage to take some time on some other riders – they had 2 or 3 riders with their leader in the group. And yeah, maybe later on in the race they won’t have that opportunity anymore and might regret that they didn’t take it now.”

“I wanted to do the climbs in a high pace because I knew some of the rivals would have to pay for that. I was not mad at Froome, I just analyzed the race situation and noticed that he didn’t put any effort to take time on any of the other riders behind. If there had been more collaboration, I am sure we could have made bigger differences, but of course, everybody defines his own race goals and has his own race tactics,” explained Contador. “The important thing is that it has been a beautiful stage and that there are still a lot of those ahead of us.” Strap in because the show has just begun

Chris Froome (Team Sky) “That’s the hardest day of the Vuelta so far. It didn’t stop all day, the attacks and for us having Sanchez infront we had to pull really hard and keep the break really close. The team was fantastic today and I want to thank my teammates that I’m still in red today.”

“I think it was a tough stage and a lot of people spent a lot of energy. “Even though he’s lost some time on GC he’s still a dangerous threat and he’s shown how strong he is, how tenacious he is and he is going to keep fighting all the way until the end of this Vuelta.”

Adam Yates: “It was a tough day out there,” Adam Yates, who retained the best young rider numbers, admitted. “I reckon for a lot of the guys, including me, it was probably the hardest day of the race so far.”

“Every kilometre was full gas pressing the pedals, twisty roads and nowhere to really take a break. Especially with all of the heat, it’s forecast for 32degrees but when you’re in the peloton there’s no wind and you are sitting there sweating buckets and buckets.

“All in all it was a tough day, but we got through pretty well.”

Warren Barguil (Team Sunweb) said: “Today was a really good day for the team. We firstly had Lennard in the break and then on the final, key climb we managed to be with the best riders. There was a gap of around 20 seconds to the red jersey group and Sam managed to close the gap so there was no danger of time loss for Wilco.

We carried on riding hard into the final to see what we could make of it but no other team was willing to invest so we didn’t make it across. In the end I managed to sprint to cross the line first from our group and took 6th on the stage. We can be proud of how we rode together today and look forward to the same again tomorrow.”

Enric Mas (Quickstep Floors): “We went full gas from the start of the stage. It was really crazy and really tough, but I kept pushing and believing in our chances. I felt good on the climbs, so I attacked on the last ascent of the day to see what the others can do, but also to increase our gap on the chasers, which we heard we’re coming back on us pretty fast”, said Enric Mas after his first World Tour podium.

“I know that being a neo-pro and getting onto the podium of a Grand Tour stage it’s good result, but I’d lie if I would say I’m not disappointed on missing out on the win; on the other hand, I am happy with how I rode and felt, which is encouraging. This stage showed me that I’m in a good condition and I hope I can still show something in the next two weeks.”

David De La Cruz (Quickstep Floors) –”It was a hard day. When Alberto Contador accelerated, I responded, but then I hit the ground after touching Barguil’s wheel. I managed to come back, but having spent so much energy took its toll on me on the downhill. Fortunately, with 15 kilometers to go, we were joined by a group in which I could find Matteo, who rode his heart out for me, and I’m very grateful for that. It’s a pity I lost some time today, but on the plus side the legs are good, which is important for the upcoming stages. Hopefully, tomorrow I will feel good and have a quieter day in the saddle”, said David, the best Spaniard in the overall rankings.

Jan Polanc (UAE Emirates said: “I tried to play my cards right in the breakaway, but on the last climb the three riders in front of me were too strong and pulled away. I was part of the chasing group and tried some moves to get a good stage finish and I managed to get it. I’ll try again in the next stage to get a win.”

Pawel Poljanski (Bora Hansgrohe) “It feels so good to be up there again with the best, after suffering four days like hell with this stomach problems. CeCe (Benedetti) helped me a lot, it was easier with two of us in the big break, to control the situation. I felt strong on the last climb and decided to give it a go.

In the last 20k we had to give it everything, as our gap was just 30 seconds. But maybe I pulled a little too much, I don’t know, anyway I am not really fast in sprints. I knew Marcynski was the one to watch, but I couldn’t pass him after he launched the sprint. It’s a great result, but we are here to get a win, so we will keep on trying.”

On Stage seven the peloton will ride from Llíria to a promising finale in Cuenca. The stage promises to be action packed, with steep climbs of up to 7.3% gradients, cobblestones and a finish in the new part of Cuenca


Tejay van Garderen: (BMC) (Crashed twice) “I felt great. Obviously the pace was really hard so I was on the limit but when I looked back and saw the selection being made and that I was part of it, I thought it was a good way to cement my spot on GC.

It was a bumpy road. I must have just hit something and my hands slipped off the bars. It all happened kind of fast. I’d have to watch the video to see how it happened but I don’t want to watch the video so it will kind of be a mystery with how it happened.”

“I knew the car was going to be back so I had to get on the bike I was on but it was damaged so I had to get a bike change. Once I got the bike change and we were off the descent I was like “now it’s time to go into damage control”.

When you really think about it, over three weeks nothing goes perfect. It’s more about how you deal with the not perfect days and how you take advantage of the good days. So, I think I’ve shown that I’m in good form. The injuries are pretty minor, the legs are good, the morale is good, so we’ll move forward and try to take advantage of any opportunity we get.”

Nicolas Roche: (BMC) “It was a tough day in the saddle. This morning we knew it was going to be a hard day, one for the breakaway and then two, that climb was really made for a whole lot more fireworks from behind.

As expected, there were two races in one; the breakaway and then us in the back. I hung in there as much as I could and was in that chase group that came back before the finish. I was staying in the middle of the group just hoping that Tejay van Garderen might come back or at least not making him at more of a disadvantage, so just rode to the line.”

“It’s good to be up there after a week but I also know that the Vuelta is long. In 2015, I was also sitting in third after 10 days and had a bad crash and everything blew away. So, I just know that every Grand Tour is full of traps and you have to always be focused for the whole three weeks. Anything can happen from hunger flats to crashes so you just have to take it day by day.”

Stage Result
1. Tomasz Marczynski, Lotto Soudal
2. Pawel Poljanski, BORA – hansgrohe
3. Enric Mas Quick-Step Floors

6. Warren Barguil, Team Sunweb 0:26
7. Giovanni Visconti, Bahrain Merida
8. Chris Froome Team Sky
9. Fabio Aru, Astana Pro Team
10. Jack Haig ORICA-Scott
12. Nicolas Roche BMC Racing Team
13. Adam Yates ORICA-Scott
15. Esteban Chaves ORICA-Scott
17. Vincenzo Nibali Bahrain Merida Pro
18. Wilco Kelderman Team Sunweb
20. Ilnur Zakarin Team Katusha – Alpecin
21. Michael Woods Cannondale-Drapac
22. Alberto Contador Trek – Segafredo
24. Sam Oomen Team Sunweb 0:30
25. David de la Cruz Quick-Step Floors 0:43
26. Louis Meintjes UAE Team Emirates
28. Simon Yates ORICA-Scott
44. Tejay van Garderen BMC Racing Team

1. Chris Froome Team Sky
2. Esteban Chaves ORICA-Scott 0:11
3. Nicolas Roche BMC 0:13
4. Tejay van Garderen BMC 0:27
5. Vincenzo Nibali Bahrain Merida 0:36
6. David de la Cruz Quick-Step Floors 0:40
7. Fabio Aru Astana Pro Team 0:49
8. Adam Yates ORICA-Scott 0:50
9. Michael Woods Cannondale-Drapac 1:13
10. Simon Yates ORICA-Scott 1:26
11. Wilco Kelderman Team Sunweb 1:28
12. Ilnur Zakarin Team Katusha – Alpecin 1:40
13. Warren Barguil Team Sunweb 1:43
14. Sam Oomen Team Sunweb 1:57
19. Louis Meintjes UAE Team Emirates 2:55
20. Steven Kruijswijk Team LottoNL-Jumbo 2:59
24. Alberto Contador Trek – Segafredo 3:10
31. Romain Bardet AG2R La Mondiale 8:03



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