Branislau Samoilau put on great performance on Stage 3 of Tour de Suisse, by aggressive ride in the breakaway of the day. In addition, Davide Rebellin narrowly missed out the top 10 at the finish.
The stage kicked off on a strong note. First 19 kilometers of racing were going uphill, towards HC category climb – Gotthardpass. The top of the ascent was located at 2098 m above the sea level. At first it was Marco Marcato (Wanty Groupe Gobert) and Stefan Denifl (IAM Cycling) who broke clear on the climb. Then, Branislau Samoilau decided to follow them. He attacked and bridged across. When he joined the leading duo, the gap was at 4 minutes.
On the long descend, the trio with CCC Sprandi Polkowice rider, increased their advantage. With 40 kilometers to go they were 6:30 ahead of the bunch, but there were still two categorized climbs in front of the escapees.
When Tinkoff-Saxo picked up the pace in the peloton the gap started to drop rapidly. When it was 25 kilometers left, Samoilau’s group’s lead was 3 minutes. 8 kilometers later, Marcato got dropped and Samoilau continued his breakaway journey alongside Denifl. Eventually they were also reeled in, with 8,5 km to go, by a 30-man main group, which survived the selection on the climbs. Davide Rebellin was there among others.
The final uphill kilometers were filled with attacks. Numerous riders tried to take advantage of that terrain, but all those moves were neutralized. The compact group arrived at the finish. Peters Sagan (Tinkoff-Saxo) was the fastest and claimed the victory. He bested Daniel Moreno (Katusha) and Thibaut Pinot (FDJ). Davide Rebellin finished in 12th and now sits in 26th overall, 1:26 back.
Today I felt much better than on yesterday’s stage. I was able to stay with the strongest all the way to the line, but I made a mistake in the sprint. The last few hundred meters were slightly downhill and I started the finish from too far back. The finale was very twisty and it was impossible to pass other riders – Davide Rebellin said afterwards.
Tom Dumoulin (Giant-Alpecin) defended his leading jersey.