An expert on Tour de Pologne, Mariusz Witecki (CCC Polsat Polkowice) shared his reflections after the next, fifth stage, with the finishing line in Zakopane.
A long stage in laps, with 10 climbs. It seemed that there will be a bigger selection, but a big group – as for such a route – arrived at the finishing line. You could see that all the pretenders for tomorrow’s triumph were riding conservatively, and everybody waited for what the rivals would do, waiting for the ultimate battle tomorrow.
Today, like in the previous stages, a lot of those willing to get into a breakaway, which took place only after the climb. It’s a pity that today ‘Matys’ – Bartek Matysiak – did not manage to breakaway again and defend the best climber’s jersey, but the three days in the front certainly got into his legs. But tomorrow there is another day, and the jersey is not out of reach, especially because tomorrow Podgorny should be tired after today’s long breakaway.
It’s good that everyday we see the jerseys of CCC Polsat Polkowice at the front, today ‘Tacior’ – Mateusz Taciak – rode well, so you could see that the boys are complementing each other in those stages, and fight from the start to the finishing line.
The pace definitely increased as early as two laps before the finishing line, the groups started to ride definitely faster, which stretched the peloton a lot, however the lack of determined attacks resulted in a really big group arriving at the penultimate climb.
And in the downhill stretch ‘Rutek’ as usual demonstrated his skills, and I know how hard it is to keep behind him down the hill. It’s only a pity that that downhill stretch was not more technical, because he would have a bigger advantage at the bottom. Perhaps tomorrow it will rain, then ‘Rutek’ will be in his element, which may help him a lot in the stage win, and give him the first place in the GC.
Today ‘Rutek’ did not manage to arrive at the finishing line in the first place, because – in my opinion – the aim was winning the seconds at the intermediate stage, but tomorrow he should ride up the hill among the best ones, and down the hill he may as well ride alone…
The last 10 km and a lot of attacks towards the finishing line, but the situation was controlled by the cyclists of Liquigas. ‘Rutek’ rode well in the home stretch, being alert all the time, riding at the front. Also Paweł Cieślik deserves praise for eliminating nicely several cyclists’ attempt to breakaway on the top of the second climb.
A big group at the finishing line, the final stretch and for the second time Peter Sagan is the winner. If he wins once again tomorrow, that will be a race of two cyclists, because Marcel Kittel is almost a cert for the last stage.
That would be a rare situation if two cyclists won all the stages, but we will see tomorrow what it will be like, and may the Poles not stand in the way of their plans!!!
Greetings – ‘Witek’ – Mariusz Witecki