Paris-Nice (st. 1)
Colombian from Movistar Team attentive into all main splits at eventful opener in Saint-Germain-en-Laye; Marc loses 1′ against top GC riders in difficult day.
Dylan Groenewegen (TJV) took the victory in an eventful opening stage of the 2019 Paris-Nice, less than 140km in and around Saint-Germain-en-Laye yet a huge battle due to the gusty winds currently hitting northern Europe.
Nairo Quintana and the Movistar Team were forced to work hard into the final hour of racing, as continuous attacks and splits required full focus from the Colombian. Well supported at most of the moves by Imanol Erviti and Jürgen Roelandts, Quintana was able to finish inside a front peloton of about 60 riders. However, behind Nairo, title holder Marc Soler was soon dropped and struggled, alongside Winner Anacona, to get back to the first group. Quite close to bridging back with 15km remaning, a late push by the bunch buried the Catalan’s hopes, and left him 1′ adrift at the finish line.
The squad directed by José Luis Arrieta and José Luis Jaimerena still has two flat, difficult stages ahead in this year’s ‘Course to the Sun’, with crosswinds again to become a factor. Monday’s route will cover 163km southbound, towards the town of Bellegarde.
Cover picture (c): BettiniPhoto.net