Gregor Mühlberger (BORA-Hansgrohe), the sixth and penultimate stage of the BinckBank Tour won. The Austrian overtook his companions, among whom Tim Wellens, with a late attack in the final. Wellens finished second, Matej Mohoric (UAE Team Emirates) remains the leader.
The sixth stage brought the peloton by Limburg Riemst to the Dutch town of Sittard-Geleen, a traditional arrival in the BinckBank Tour and its predecessors. The hilly course – with up to 20 slopes – seemed to be attractive to runners, but with a virtually flat last 40 miles it would be difficult for a group to keep ahead. The form of an early flight lasted surprisingly long. Our compatriot Laurens De Vreese (Astana) followed in the debates, but would not come away.
Backaert in the early flight
After nearly an hour exchange rates was the early flight, then formed: Mathias Brändle (Pull-Segafredo), Alexis Gougeard (AG2R La Mondiale), Nick van der Lijke (Roompot) and our fellow countryman, Frederik Backaert (Wanty-Groupe Gobert) went on an adventure together on the sloping Hilly roads. The four got a maximum lead of around six minutes.In the peloton had to Baptiste Planckaert in the meantime, the course was abandoned after a fall, also Oscar Gatto gave in.
With slightly more than 100 kilometres on the counter took the peloton enough and the throttle is turned up, under the direction of the dominant team of QuickStep Floors. The advantage of the leaders melted away like snow before the sun, and with slightly more than 50 miles ahead, got the pack the front runners in sight. The signal for the Belgian champion Yves Lampaert to look at the tree to shake, without success. Also team-mate Niki Terpstra followed by Tim Wellens (Lotto Soudal) – tried it.
Steam Train Bodnar
The four leaders were caught, and with still 45 kilometers to go, there was a new attack of Timo Roosen (LottoNL-Jumbo) and hardrijder Maciej Bodnar (BORA-Hansgrohe), that have successfully pulled away from the peloton and almost a minute ahead at each cycle. Dangerous, because the Pool Bodnar was less than 45 seconds of leader Matej Mohoric (UAE Team Emirates) in the general classification. The depleted peloton could not the pace, while Mohoric fully insulated was.
On the schatsberg climb, 18 kilometres from the finish, burst the finale in all its loose when Tim Wellens from the pack wegsprong. Lampaert and Jasper Stuyven (Trek-Segafredo), the winner of the day before yesterday, followed in his track. In the descent, then got Stefan Küng (BMC), the number three in the rankings, against the ground. Also the winner of the Omloop het Nieuwsblad, Michael Valgren Andersen (Astana), was added while Tour of Flanders winner Niki Terpstra was stopped.
With ten kilometres to go and was followed by a regrouping at the front. Wellens and co. came to connect with Bodnar and Roosen and Greg Van Avermaet and Michael Matthews were two interesting men to connect, so there is 7 leaders came. Also Mohoric tried to get away, but he could make the switch not make. A regrouping was threatened and thus tried to two-time overall winner Tim Wellens the than but only. The rider from team Lotto Soudal collected some of the fietslengten.
From the background came also Maximilian Schachmann (QuickStep Floors) sharply up on the penultimate climb, the Windraak. The strong Mohoric followed in his footsteps, but the pair was in the pay of the Watersley (the last climb of the day) picked up. The next attack of QuickStep Floors came from Zdenek Stybar. The triple world champion in cyclo-cross got Tim Wellens in the sights, and came after a few kilomers hard push connect, but the peloton was not far. With Dylan van Baarle (Team Sky) and Gregor Mühlberger (BORA-Hansgrohe) came in the lock, two men connecting with Wellens and Stybar.
All the way the front was, however, silent. The signal for Gregor Mühlberger to the only try, while Schachmann in the background came to connect with Wellens and co. Mühlberger kept his writ is full to the line and was the unexpected dagwinnaar. Wellens sprinted to the second place and picked up a few bonificatieseconden. Stybar was third. In the background was also Belgian champion Yves Lampaert still heavy fall. The West-Fleming ran a pack bruises and abrasions, but no breaks. Also Jasper Stuyven would there have been. The fall came, apparently, after a maneuver of the leader Matej Mohoric, that the inside of a bend would be cut off.
Tomorrow is the last stage of the Lacs de l’eau d’heure to Geraardsbergen, where the finish line again on the Wall of Geraardsbergen.
Result of sixth stage:
1. Gregor Mühlberger (BORA-Hansgrohe)
2. Tim Wellens (Lotto Soudal) +3”
3. Zdenek Stybar (QuickStep Floors) +3”
4. Dylan van Baarle (Team Sky) +3”
5. Maximilian Schachmann (QuickStep Floors) +5”
6. Greg Van Avermaet (BMC) +8”
7. Soren Kragh Andersen (Team Sunweb) +8”
8. Oliver Naesen (AG2R La Mondiale) +11”
9. Jay McCarthy (BORA-Hansgrohe) +11”
10. Mads Würtz Schmidt (Team Katusha-Alpecin) +11”
General classification after the sixth stage:
1. Matej Mohoric (UAE Team Emirates)
2. Michael Matthews (Team Sunweb) +30”
3. Taco van der Hoorn (Roompot) +32”
4. Soren Kragh Andersen (Team Sunweb) +34”
5. Maximilian Schachmann (QuickStep Floors) +35”
6. Maciej Bodnar (BORA-Hansgrohe) +36”
7. Victor Campenaerts (Lotto Soudal) +36”
8. Tim Wellens (Lotto Soudal) +37”
9. Dylan van Baarle (Team Sky) +44”
10. Gregor Mühlberger (BORA-Hansgrohe) +47”