Daily News Digest

by Mark Zalewski

April 8, 2016

In today’s CT Daily News Digest: Sammy Sanchez wins in another close Basque stage; Blaak wins Energiewacht Tour stage 2, takes over lead; Vorobyev makes it two wins at Circuit de la Sarthe; Lechuga takes the opening stage at Redlands Classic; Companioni solos to victory at opening stage of Redlands Classic; Scheldeprijs record-setter Kittel: The most important lesson was to never give up; Patron saint of the breakaway: why Amets Txurruka joined Orica-GreenEdge; Commentary: Two words, Fabian: semi-retirement; Roche: Peter Sagan has the edge over Fabian Cancellara in Paris-Roubaix; The Unbearable Lightness of Being Sagan; Boels-Dolmans head to Philly in June to repeat Lizzie’s win of 2015; Scientist’s new method could catch more drugs cheats; Popovych to retire after Paris-Roubaix;Photo gallery: Marcel Kittel’s Scheldeprijs-winning Specialized Venge ViAS; Photo gallery: Bike tech from Scheldeprijs; Mr. Paris Roubaix himself, Roger De Vlaeminck, talks about the Hell of the North; Specialized features Tom Boonen as he tries for a fifth Paris-Roubaix win; Chas Christiansen Ripping Around the Streets of San Francisco

Sammy Sanchez wins in another close Basque stage

by Mark Zalewski

BMC’s Samuel Sanchez became another in a line of successful late solo attackers at the Tour of the Basque country, winning the fourth stage in another dramatic finish.

As if the other stages didn’t feature steep enough climbing, today’s final categorised climb had pitches up to 28%. And with the wet conditions, rear tyre traction for the climb was difficult to come by. The climb opened up the race with yellow jersey Mikel Landa (SKY) put into difficulty and his team leaving him behind.


Carlos Verona (Etixx-QuickStep) and Tim Wellens (Lotto Soudal) crested the top with a gap, but chased by a group containing such favourites as Alberto Contador (Tinkoff) and Nairo Quintana (Movistar). With the wet descent Wellens seemed to think discretion was the better part of valor while Verona threw caution to the wind, taking chances and going alone for the win.

With 3.5km to go Verona was rejoined by Wellens as well as Luis Mate (Cofidis). Behind Mikel Landa was able to rejoin the second chase group, which was closing down the gap to the first chase and leaders.

While not categorised, the final few kilometres featured a climb that, combined with in-fighting between the breakaway, allowed the first chase to make the catch at 2km to go. This reshuffling gave Contador the motivation to attack with Sergio Henao (Sky) and Sanchez giving chase. Henao stuck to Contador’s wheel while Sanchez came around and crested the top with a small gap, seeing the 1km to go flag.

This turned out to be enough as the 56th edition of the race produced another dramatic finish with a solo attacker just making it to the line for victory. Landa’s group finished 8 seconds behind, giving Wilco Kelderman the yellow jersey.

Stage 4: Lesaka > Orio - Stage Result

Thursday 7th April 2016

1. es
SáNCHEZ Samuel
BMC Racing Team
2. pt
Lampre - Merida
3. fr
Team Giant - Alpecin
The CyclingTips Daily News Digest features the most important and interesting news and content from around the cycling world, published every weekday morning at 9am AEST. Get it delivered straight to your inbox.

Our feature image comes from Kristof Ramon showing Tom Boonen taking the lead over the wet cobbles of the 104th Scheldeprijs.