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By Shane Stokes
Although he sounded a little uncertain on Tuesday about his chances of making up his six second deficit after placing second to Rein Taaramae on the first mountain stage of the Presidential Tour of Turkey, Adam Yates managed to do just that on Friday’s sixth stage, taking over the race leader’s jersey in the process.
The Orica GreenEdge rider attacked close to the top of the final climb of the day, the ascent to Selcuk, and raced in two seconds ahead of Davide Formolo (Cannondale) and Davide Rebellin (CCC Polsat Polkowice).
Race leader Taaramae led in a chase group seven seconds back, thus dropping out of the leader’s turquoise jersey by just one second. Two stages remain in the Presidential Tour of Turkey, ensuring a dramatic finale, but the possibility of bunch sprints on both days mean it might prove tough for the Cofidis rider to get the time back.
“The boys worked really well. They kept me out of the wind all day, I barely touched the wind all day,” said Yates after the jersey presentation. “It was quite windy out there at times, quite a lot of crosswinds. I didn’t have to spend any extra energy. They put me in a good position at the bottom of the climb and I took over from there.
“I knew I had to leave it late because if I went a bit too early and went a bit too deep, I might not have made the six seconds. So we stuck to the plan and I went with just about a kilometre to go. Then it was pretty much full gas from there.”
Taaramae was clearly the stronger rider of the two on Tuesday’s mountain stage but Yates got the upper hand on Friday. The Estonian rider said that one difference was that there was much more total climbing on the earlier stage, while Friday’s stage to Selcuk had considerably less.
It meant that Taaramae, the rider with more experience and years racing, was unable to draw on the advantages that his stamina might have given him. Instead it was the young neo pro who prevailed, and who is now in pole position in the 2.HC ranked race.
The 182 kilometre stage began in the seaside town of Bodrum and it didn’t take long for a dangerous move to go clear. Those present included Andre Greipel (Lotto Belisol), normally a sprinter, but who is still recovering from a bad shoulder injury and thus doesn’t want to engage in the big gallops.
Also in the break were Javier Aramendia (Caja Rural), Adrian Kurek (CCC-Polsat Polkowice), Wesley Kreder (Wanty Groupe Gobert), Astana’s Arman Kamyshev and Matthias Krizek of Cannondale.
Other riders tried to get across to them but were unable to do so. The break worked well and eked out a maximum lead of almost six minutes, but this then started to fall.
Armendia was best at the intermediate sprint 85 kilometres after the start, while 38 kilometres later Greipel triumphed in the Turkish Beauties prime.
The move was eventually hauled back thirty kilometres from the end, after which the peloton raced on twards the final climb and up onto its slopes. Lotto Belisol’s Adam Hansen was feeling good and attacked twice, but was hauled back each time. Yates’ move was better timed and saw him immediately get a gap; he continued to build the seconds and was able to overcome Taaramae’s six second lead by the time he hit the line.
“It’s my first pro win so it’s very special,” he said afterwards, relishing the emotion. “At the moment it has not really sunk in.”
Stage 6 Tour of Turkey Results
Presidential Cycling Tour of Turkey (2.HC) Bodrum → Selcuk
DE MAAR Marc
Cofidis, Solutions Crédits