Saturday, June 09, 2012

Martínez second in Dauphiné

Egoi Martínez grabbed a strong, if somewhat frustrating, second place in today's fifth stage of the Dauphiné.

The super domestique formed part of the day's decisive nine-man break on the 186,5km stage from Saint-Trivier-sur-Moignans to Rumilly, a break that was eventually given the chance to fight it out for the win as the likes of Wiggins, Evans and co. had enough of a battle on their hands for GC back in the peloton. Arthur Vichot made a bold solo move with some six clicks to go and impressively hung on quite easily to take the biggest win of his budding career. The guys left behind by the 23-year-old Frenchman were unable to cooperate and were duly left to sprint for second. Amazingly, Martínez, not know for his fast-twitch muscle fibres, beat his breakaway companions to the line to grab a solid results. A second place is nothing compared to a win in this sport, but at least a few WorldTour points went the team's way.

Talking post-race, the combative allrounder sounded pretty happy with his effort:

"The Tour preparations seem to be on track", he told "I've been working hard in training, and I'm glad to see that training paying off in the races. And I'm also happy about having been able to fight for the stage-win - I'm getting older, so to be in the mix is encouraging. We all like to come out tops, but it's hard in such big breaks like these. You don't get a lot of opportunities to like this, but to get them you've got to be in the breaks. If you're not, it's never going to happen. Therefore it's also important to value the effort".

If anything, Martínez's efforts in this race bodes well for the Tour de France in three weeks' time.

Another one on the up is Samuel Sánchez. The unfortunate 34-year-old stayed with the front group going over the Colombier and looked decent on the bike. In 21 days he'll be fine. Samu eventually let go off the group of favourites on the run-in, but Mikel Landa once again offered proof of his top shape by finishing 47th on the same time as Wiggins, Evans et al.

 Overall he's 49th, four places behind the team's top rider, Egoi Martínez.

Stage five results (click here for full results):
  • (1, Arthur Vichot (FDJ), 4:42:17)
  • 2, Egoi Martínez, 0:26
  • 47, Mikel Landa, 0:59
  • 60, Samuel Sánchez, 4:34
  • 81, Jorge Azanza, 9:03
  • 92, Peio Bilbao, 13:59
  • 108, Gorka Verdugo, s.t.
  • 147, Alan Pérez, 20:53

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