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by Caley Fretz
March 22, 2018
In today’s Daily News Digest: Elia Viviani wins Driedaasge de Panne; Thomas de Gendt wins solo in Catalunya; Canyon-Topeak and Investec Songo Specialized take wins at Cape Epic; The life and death of the Wolfpack Marathon Crash Race; CyclingTips Podcast: Driverless cars, Milan-San Remo, and a Tour de France tangent; Proper disc-brake bed-in; Scott Sunderland out of action due to new concussion; Funding for walking and cycling infrastructure falls short in Australia; Minali wins stage 4 of the Tour of Langkawi; UCI launches next phase in testing for hidden motors
Thomas de Gendt (Lotto-Soudal) took victory in a weather-shortened third stage of the Volta Catalunya following a long day in the break, and then a solo finale. The stage victory also earns de Gendt the overall race lead, 23 seconds ahead of Alejandro Valverde (Movistar).
The route for stage 3 was altered by race organizers, cutting out the 2000-meter Vallter climb due to cold temperatures, vicious winds, and avalanche danger. Temperatures were projected to dip far below freezing. The stage instead ended in Camprodon.
The change cut out the queen stage of this year’s race, which will now likely be decided on the climb to La Molina at the end of stage 4.
De Gendt set of festivities in the altered finale. He left his breakaway companions behind and set out on a solo effort that built a gap of more than a minute. He was eventually chased by a group of four including Simon Yates, Thibaut Pinot, Mathias Frank, and Nairo Quintana. Behind, Sky led the chase.
In the end, none could catch the Lotto-Soudal rider. His four chasers were swallowed up at the line by a dramatically reduced peloton, which was further split in the final kilometre by a crash that took out Adam Yates.