The Tour Take | Tour de Suisse Stage 6

 Photo: Twila Federica Muzzi

Photo: Twila Federica Muzzi

The Steps

1st – Soren Kragh Andersen

2nd – Nathan Haas @ 0:10

3rd – Gorka Izagirre @ 0:24

 

The Parcours

With two long HC climbs, a long valley, and a punchy finish, Stage 6 was one for the puncheurs. The finishing climb started with 3.2km to go and topping out with 1000m to go before a false flat to the line. It was a tough little climb to the finish in Gommiswald, reaching 12% and being more than hard enough to make a decent advantage.

The Jerseys

Overall –  Richie Porte

Points – Peter Sagan

KOM – Mark Christian

Young Riders – Sam Oomen

 

 

The Break

A 17 man break went away on the first climb of the day, but it was distilled down to 8 on the second. Those 8 were Nathan Haas, Rein Taaramae, Michael Gogl, Mark Christian, Soren Kragh Andersen, Cyril Gautier, Gorka Izagirre, and Maxime Monfort. Monfort was the highest placed rider overall, only 2:31 back at the start of the day, so he was the virtual leader as the break found a maximum lead of 5:00.

 

With the break realizing they were in with a sniff of winning the stage, they were hammering along, and still had 4 minutes gap with 35km to go. With 18km to go, they still had 3 minutes, and BMC were stringing the main bunch out as they aimed to defend Porte’s Yellow Jersey. By 10km to go, the break’s lead finally dropped below the magical 2:31, and the break’s focus was solely on the stage win.

 

The Finish

The break was playing games with each other on the climb, and their lead had been cut to 1 minute only by 2.2km to go. At that moment Gogl attacked, and he built a small lead as the others were reluctant to chase. It was Soren Kragh Andersen who finally did though, pulling back Gogl 500m from the top of the climb and setting off alone.

 

Meanwhile, Richie Porte was testing the legs of the GC contenders, stretching the field and dropping everyone halfway up the climb. By the top of the climb, he was only 20 seconds down on Andersen.

 

There wasn’t enough time for anyone to bridge to the Dane though, as Andersen crossed the line alone. Nathan Haas was 9 seconds behind in second place, while Porte rolling in with the rest of the breakaway, gaining a crucial 12 seconds advantage over the rest of the GC contenders.

 

The Movers and Shakers

Porte showed his excellent form by testing himself on the final climb. This wasn’t even a surprise attack; he just went to the front of the bunch and rode everyone off his wheel, a great sign for a month’s time.

 

The Aussies

 

2nd – Nathan Haas @ 0:09

6th – Richie Porte @ 0:27 (1st on GC)

11th – Jack Haig @ 0:39 (5th on GC)

78th – Simon Gerrans @ 5:09

79th – Cameron Meyer @ 5:10

90th – Michael Matthews @ 7:10

 

 

Next

The race’s queen stage, Stage 7 finishes at Arosa. A rolling start to the stage is followed by a long finishing climb. The climb comes in two main sections: the first 12km rise at 6%, and after an 8km false flat, a pitch of 10% for 3km

The Pick

With not many chances for the big GC boys to take a win, expect an all-out war for the stage. Richie Porte is our tip – with the finishing touches going on his TDF form, a mountain hit-out would be perfect, and he showed on stage 7 that he’s ready.

See you back at the social club,

Josh