CCC Sprandi Polkowice proved on stage 1 that they are the strongest team in the Tour de Hongrie field, but they couldn’t turn that into stage victory. They claimed three top 10 spots and Kamil Małecki finished in 3rd place.
Info: August 15th, Balatonalmádi – Keszthely, 154km
Course: highly undulating
Two-man escape was trying their chances during the stage, but they couldn’t do much against the big bunch. Their gap of around 3 minutes was never something that the peloton were concerned about and it was all back together with 35km to go.
When the race entered decisive phase, in hilly terrain, the pack got shattered and only 30 riders left in the main pack. CCC Sprandi Polkowice still had 6 men in the front, with Adrian Kurek, Kamil Małecki, Leszek Pluciński, Paweł Bernas, Mateusz Taciak and Patryk Stosz. The latter was very active in the climbs, collected 11 points at KOMs and took the lead in King of the Mountains classification.
The final climb of the day saw Adrian Kurek and Paweł Bernas shake things up in the front and the former was even able to pull away solo with 10km to go. Chasers managed to close the gap though and it came down to a sprint.
“Orange squad” put 6 guys in their lead-out train and the fastest of them, Kamil Małecki sprinted to 3rd place. Also Bernas and Kurek finished in top 10, in 6th and 8th respectively. Manuel Belletti got the win ahead of Matteo Moschetti.
My teammates did a great job in the finale, helping me get a good position for the sprint and I want to thank them for that. Unfortunately I hesitated a little bit in the end and that cost me at the line. Legs were good though, so I look forward to the next stages – Kamil Małecki said afterwards.