Marek Rutkiewicz missed out on the podium and finished 4th in the Polish championship road race. He spent most of the day in the break and arrived at the line in a 5-man group.
After two very hard stage races – Giro d’Italia and Tour de Suisse – I didn’t have dynamism in my legs to fight for the podium – Marek Rutkiewicz said afterwards. – I was strong enough to be in every important move, but I was not able sprint against such strong riders as Tomasz Marczyński, Michał Gołaś and Paweł Bernas, who made the podium. I didn’t have freshness and I want to spend next few weeks to gain it and be ready for Tour de Pologne. That’s my goal for the second part of the season.
The race kicked off with numerous breakaway attempts. Those attacks led to 13-man escape, with Adrian Honkisz and Marek Rutkiewicz. Also Michał Gołaś, Przemysław Niemiec, Tomasz Marczyński and Paweł Bernas were among the escapees. Later Tomasz Kiendyś counterattacked with Mateusz Nowaczek from the bunch and joined the leaders.
The break of the day consisted of 15 cyclists, who established over 6-minute lead. The peloton was not willing to let the attackers go all the way. 13 riders began the chase – Leszek Pluciński and Łukasz Owsian were in that chasing group, alongside Rafał Majka, Kamil Gradek, Paweł Franczak and Bartosz Huzarski were among others. They were steadily decreasing the gap and with 4 laps to go it was around 2 minutes.
The leading group broke apart when some runners decided to pull away. The 15-man group shrank to 10 men, but there were still three “riders in orange” in the front – Rutkiewicz, Kiendyś and Honkisz. On the penultimate circuit Łukasz Owsian, Majka, Huzarski, Franczak and Gradek bridged across, creating again a 15-man breakaway.
In the last 18-kilometers Marek Rutkiewicz launched an attack with Michał Gołaś, Tomasz Marczyński, Bartosz Huzarski and Paweł Bernas. They built up 40-second lead and delivered it to the finish. In the hard, uphill sprint Tomasz Marczyński was the strongest. He outsprinted Michał Gołaś and Paweł Bernas. Marek Rutkiewicz finished in 4th place.
In total four “riders in orange” were in the top 10 – Adrian Honkisz was 6th, Łukasz Owsian 8th and Tomasz Kiendyś 9th.