Stybar: “Tomorrow is a hard stage, but I will try my best”
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Saturday, August 17, 2013

Stybar: “Tomorrow is a hard stage, but I will try my best”

by Kyle Moore at 2:39 PM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Eneco Tour
Another strong Eneco Tour stage finish has Czech rider placed second overall

Zdenek StybarAfter sprinting to victory on stage three, Zdenek Stybar (Omega Pharma-Quick Step) used another strong ride on the arduous stage six, grabbing second on the stage to move up to second overall.

Stybar picked a good day to have a great day, going with a decisive move with new overall leader Tom Dumoulin (Argos-Shimano) and catching most of the remnants of the stage’s early breakaway. David Lopez Garcia (Sky Procycling) held everyone off for the victory, but Stybar snuck up for second.

With his team leader behind, Stybar benefited from outstanding work done by Dumoulin to distance former overall leader Lars Boom (Belkin), as well as threats Philippe Gilbert (BMC Racing) and Chavanel. Stybar praised Dumoulin for his efforts after the stage, and explained his team’s tactics for the tough stage.

"It was a hard day from the beginning. I tried to get early bonus seconds, but I felt at that time that I didn't really recover fully from the time trial,” Stybar explained. “But the feeling got better as the race went on. But still, the race was really hard. On the first passage of La Redoute there was already some time between the riders in front and the group. We had Stijn [Vandenbergh] in front and I was behind, so the fact that Stijn was in front, he protected us.

“In the final, Dumoulin did a great job in the small group to catch the three guys in front. He was really strong today and he deserves his leadership in the GC. I didn't collaborate because I was waiting for Chavanel, to see if he was able to come back. But it wasn't the case.”

The former cyclocross world champion thought the stage victory might have been achievable, had he played the finale differently.

“I think I did a good race. I am happy with it even if the sprint for me could have maybe started 50 or 60 meters before. If I did that, I could have maybe done better, but it is easy to talk about these things after the stage is over. The truth is, everybody was waiting until the last moment because La Redoute is really steep. We all wanted to avoid the problem of paying for the effort on the climbs."

Even with Saturday’s major moves in the general classification, the overall picture could change to an even larger degree on Sunday. The 208km stage takes on many climbs popularized in the Ronde van Vlaanderen.

The stage visits the Muur van Geraardsbergen, with the Bosberg following immediately after, two separate times in the stage. Sandwiched in between are the Tenbosse and the Eikenmolen, with the stage finale contested on the third trip up the Muur.

Stybar pointed to the difficulty of the stage, but stopped short of saying that he would be working to better his GC position by one. Chavanel sits in seventh, at 50 seconds back, and far be it from Omega Pharma-Quick Step to reveal specific tactics a day out from Sunday’s finale.

"Tomorrow is a hard stage, but I will try my best," Stybar concluded. "We also have ‘Chava’ in the top ten of the GC, so we will see what we can do as a team. The weather will probably be a little bit worse than today. They forecasted rain and wind, but we will see. We have a good team and we will do everything we can for a good result tomorrow."


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