Excluding prologue, Simone Ponzi hasn’t finished outside top 11 in 2017 Sibiu Cycling Tour. He reached the top of Paltinis, the finish line of stage 3, in 10th place.
Info: Stage 3, 8th of July, Sibiu – Paltinis, 211,5km
Course: hilly, with mountain top finish (twice Jina – 20km long, avg. 1,8%, max. 20%, cat. A; Dumbrava – 3,3km, avg. 5,2%, max. 8,3%, cat. C, Paltinis – 14,8km, avg. 5,5%, max. 11%, cat. A)
How it unfolded
After great climbing performance on yesterday’s stage and advancing into top 10 of GC, Simone Ponzi was very attentive early on, eying first intermediate sprint and bonus seconds. He took 3rd there, shaving off 1 second of his overall time.
After that sprint the bunch let go 5-man breakaway, with Andrea Borso (Adria Mobil), Francesco Canepa (GM Europa Ovini), Moritz Fußnegger (0711|Cycling), Damian Lüscher (Roth-Akros), Cameron Piper (Team Illuminate). The peloton didn’t start chasing, until the gap was at 7:30. CCC Sprandi Polkowice sparked the pursuit.
The escapees were being brought back in one after another and with 10km from the top of Paltinis the last attacker got caught. For the second consecutive time Egan Bernal (Androni Giocattoli) put on show on the climb, taking a solo win. Again, he bested Colin Stüssi (Roth-Akros) and Cristian Raileanu (Team Differdange – Loschrdange) was third. Simone Ponzi put up a fight, finishing the day in 10th place.
Bernal retained the yellow jersey, while Ponzi dropped one spot, to 7th (3:55 behind).