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Marc Soler’s Paris-Nice win, in pictures

12 March 2018
Imagen de la noticia ‛Marc Soler’s Paris-Nice win, in pictures’

Photo gallery

We bring you – thanks to work from BettiniPhoto.net and ASO – the best stills from a week full of emotions which ended up with the Catalan’s win at the ‘Course to the Sun’, his maiden UCI WorldTour stagerace victory.

Marc Soler’s victory in the 2018 edition of Paris-Nice marks the eighth win of the season for the Movistar Team and (only) the third success in a UCI race for the Catalan rider, after the 2015 Tour de l’Avenir and the Queen stage of the 2016 Route du Sud.

We offer you the most significant pictures from the last eight days of racing, with special attention to the exciting final weekeng, where Marc struggled -with support from a phenomenal Richard Carapaz- and later on bounced back to overall glory.

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Photo: Movistar Team

The opening stage -and many of them afterwards- in the ‘Course to the Sun’ did not have such a splendid weather to ride with.

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Photo: ASO / Alex Broadway

The opening stage, a short (barely 135km), nervous one, rode through roads in the southwest part of the French capital’s metropolitan area.

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Photo: BettiniPhoto.net / Movistar Team

Carlos Barbero finished 12th in a tough sprint in Meudon -long finishing straight, uphill, with cobblestones-, where Arnaud Démare (GFC) claimed victory by a nail over Gorka Izagirre (TBM).

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Photo: BettiniPhoto.net / Movistar Team

Soler and Carapaz finished the opening stage inside the main GC group.

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Photo: Movistar Team

Carapaz, whose teamwork would later on become crucial for Soler’s success, was all smiles at the start of stage two.

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Photo: Movistar Team

Soler completed the first two stages, predictably sprint finishes, with great attention…

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Photo: Movistar Team

… to don a somewhat unexpected (not that he wasn’t a contender, rather than timing) white jersey as under-26 leader following day 2.

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Photo: Movistar Team

At the start of stage three, Soler had a picture with ‘The Badger’, five-time Tour de France winner Bernard Hinault.

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Photo: BettiniPhoto.net / Movistar Team

Stage three did only get strung out at the end, with a tremendous acceleration in the Cat-3 climb by Astana and Quick Step.

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Photo: BettiniPhoto.net / Movistar Team

Soler momentarily concede his white jersey by the same rule, the position countback, that had put him in the lead 24 hours earlier.

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Photo: Movistar Team

Things stood pretty much equal for all GC contenders before Wednesday’s time trial in Saint-Étienne.

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Photo: BettiniPhoto.net / Movistar Team

At the TT stage four, Soler showed his strength to finish in a fantastic 2nd place, behind Dutchman Wout Poels (SKY).

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Photo: BettiniPhoto.net / Movistar Team

Marc now sat in fourth place overall, behind Luis León Sánchez (AST) -who had escaped in the previous stage-, Poels and Julian Alaphilippe (QST).

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Photo: ASO / Alex Broadway

At the start of stage five, now in Provence, ‘Luisle’ and Soler chatted in their respective yellow and white jerseys.

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Photo: BettiniPhoto.net / Movistar Team

Despite a late scare for Carlos Barbero, close to crashing at the final sprint, it was a day with no incidents for Soler and his team-mates.

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Photo: BettiniPhoto.net / Movistar Team

The race entered its final weekend, with three mountainous stages in Provence.

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Photo: Movistar Team

Carlos Barbero escaped in a really surprising way and kept the Movistar Team riders calm into the bunch.

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Photo: Movistar Team

Despite struggling on the very last ascent towards Vence, Soler remained in a fantastic position on the standings.

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Photo: ASO / Alex Broadway

That’s how the race got to Nice and the penultimate day of racing, finishing atop the ski station of Valdeblore La Colmiane.

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Photo: BettiniPhoto.net / Movistar Team

Rain would not stop for the remainder of Paris-Nice. The Blues had to battle and suffer…

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Photo: BettiniPhoto.net / Movistar Team

… as much as Marc Soler did into the last climb. Despite incredible support from Richard Carapaz, the Spaniard did surrender briefly to pressure from his rivals on the last 2km.

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Photo: BettiniPhoto.net / Movistar Team

Third overall in the eve of stage six, after Poels crashed out, Soler was now sixth in the GC, 37″ behind Simon Yates (MTS).

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Photo: BettiniPhoto.net / Movistar Team

Tired and a little bit sad, Soler received his white jersey. Not many people could think he would turn things upside down 24 hours later…

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Photo: ASO / Alex Broadway

Almost 50km away from the finish of the final stage, through the slopes of the Côte de Peille, Soler launched an attack and quickly caught Omar Fraile (AST), then leading the race.

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Photo: ASO / Alex Broadway

In his move, Soler was joined by another Catalan rider: David de la Cruz (SKY).

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Photo: BettiniPhoto.net / Movistar Team

Soler crossed the finish in Nice in 3rd place after an incredible fight against the other GC contenders, with lots of splits, crashes, attacks and exciting racing. Marc had always kept a gap close to the ‘magic’ half-minute advantage he had to hold across the line…

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Photo: BettiniPhoto.net / Movistar Team

… and it was 35″ at the finish. Combined with the bonus seconds into one of the intermediate sprints and the last white line in Nice, Marc had won Paris-Nice by just four seconds against Yates.

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Photo: BettiniPhoto.net / Movistar Team

On the final podium, with the last yellow jersey.

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Photo: ASO / Alex Broadway

Shaking hands with former team-mate Gorka Izagirre (TBM).

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Photo: BettiniPhoto.net / Movistar Team

The 2018 Paris-Nice podium, with Yates, Soler and Gorka Izagirre.

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Photo: BettiniPhoto.net / Movistar Team

23 minutes after Marc, Carlos Barbero crossed the line at the exact same time the podium ceremony was held – and saluted his friend and colleague’s performance with a visible sign.

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Photo: BettiniPhoto.net / Movistar Team

A fantastic performance from Richard Carapaz saw him crossing the line 8th in Nice and taking 11th overall.