John Degenkolb takes Argos-Shimano’s second win in three days at Paris-Bourges
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Thursday, October 10, 2013

John Degenkolb takes Argos-Shimano’s second win in three days at Paris-Bourges

by Ben Atkins at 5:04 PM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Race Reports and Results
 
German fastman takes bunch sprint after a day of attacks

john degenkolbJohn Degenkolb (Argos-Shimano) took his second win in a five days - and his team’s second in three - as he sprinted to victory in Paris-Bourges. The German sprinter positioned himself on the wheel of former under-23 World champion Arnaud Démare (FDJ.fr), and managed to come around the Frenchman in the final metres. Samuel Dumoulin (AG2R La Mondiale) was third.

“I expected a hard race right from the start, with crosswinds,” said Degenkolb. “But five guys rode away early in the race, and then it became easier. In the middle of the race we had a few climbs, and from there on the race was on. The team did a fantastic job today. They protected me very well and we were always in control and responded to the right moves.
 
“In the end it was a hard fight, but it worked out well. The peloton caught the break with five kilometres to go. I didn’t have a lead-out train with me here, so I benefited from the FDJ lead-out and was able to start my sprint off the wheel of Arnaud Démare at the right moment.
 
“I really like this kind of race. It’s nice to end the season this way. Now I am looking forward to my last race on the program, Paris-Tours, and I hope to confirm my form again there.”

The 193.3km was dominated by an early breakaway, as Bryan Coquard (Europcar), Julien Duval (Roubaix-Lille Métropole), Lieuwe Westra (Vacansoleil-DCM) and Tim Mertens (Topsport Vlaanderen-Baloise) escaped in the opening kilometres.

When the quartet was around three minutes clear Pavel Brutt (Katusha) and Sébastien Delfosse (Crelan-Euphony) counterattacked from the peloton behind them and managed to make their way across the gap. At the race’s halfway point, the group - which was now a sextet - was still around three minutes clear, but it was to become a quintet soon afterwards as Mertens lost contact and dropped back.

The remaining five riders managed to widen their advantage to almost four minutes, but were steadily reeled in by the peloton and they were less than 30 seconds clear with 40km to go. The final seconds of the gap were chipped away from this point on, however, and the break was only shut down with four kilometres left.

With teammate Coquard caught, Europcar’s Thomas Voeckler attacked almost immediately, but the 2006 race winner was quickly pulled back to prevent him from taking victory in the manner he had done seven years before.

FDJ.fr led into the final kilometre, but Degenkolb had managed to position himself perfectly and took the sprint victory.

Result
1. John Degenkolb (Ger) Team Argos-Shimano
2. Arnaud Démare (Fra) FDJ.fr
3. Samuel Dumoulin (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale
4. Heinrich Haussler (Aus) IAM Cycling
5. Davide Appollonio (Ita) AG2R La Mondiale
6. Rudy Barbier (Fra) Roubaix-Lille Métropole
7. Mickaël Delage (Fra) FDJ.fr
8. Lloyd Mondory (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale
9. Cyril Lemoine (Fra) Sojasun
10. Thomas Damuseau (Fra) Team Argos-Shimano

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