Davide Rebellin finished in 12th place the first stage of Tour du Limousin and is one of 19 riders who are still in the contention for the final GC. The stage was won by Björn Leukemans (Wanty-Groupe Gobert).
The 4-day race began with a hilly stage from Limoges to Brive and it was 176km long. There were three cat.3 climbs which were expected to make the day hard for the sprinters.
Soon after the start first major breakaway was formed. 4 riders were in it – Frédérik Backaert (Wanty-Groupe Gobert), Florian Guillou (Bretagne-Séché Environnement), Angel Madrazo (Caja Rural) and Flavien Dassonville (BigMat-Auber 93). They quickly gained 4 minute advantage (70km into the stage) but the peleton was not going to make the ride easy for them.
The escapees were reeled at the halfway point and after another series of attacks another, but much bigger group was established in the front. Davide Rebellin was one of the 18 riders in the escape. The other 17 were Vichot (FDJ.Fr), Gautier, Reza (Europcar), Seeldrayers, Leukemans (Wanty-Groupe Gobert), Wallays (Topsport Vlaanderen-Baloise), Finetto (Neri Sottoli), Taaramae (Cofidis), Rebellin (CCC Polsat Polkowice), Boem, Bongirono (Bardiani-CSF), Vachon (Bretagne-Séché Environnement), Parrinello (Androni Giocattoli-Venezuela), R. Fernandez (Caja Rural), Rossetto (BigMat-Auber 93), Turgis (Roubaix-Lille Métropole), Di Grégorio and J. Goncalves (La Pomme Mars).
AG2R La Mondiale, IAM Cycling, MTN-Qhubeka and Colombia didn’t have anybody from their teams in the front so they were responsible for chasing the group down. For the long time the gap stayed under one minute but eventually the peleton gave up.
Davide Rebellin hit the top of the last categorized climb (cat.3) in third place and was in good position for the stage win.
In the final kilometers few riders tried to break clear and go solo for the victory – Kern, Rossetto, but it was Björn Leukemans who was the strongest. He crossed the line 5 seconds ahead of Stephane Rossetto (Big Mat Auber) and Mauro Finetto (Neri Sottoli). Rebellin came in 12th place, 14 seconds after the winner.
Results of stage 1, Limoges – Brive, 174,4 km;
1. Björn Leukemans (Team Wanty) 4:22:23
2. Stephane Rossetto (BigMat-Auber 93) 0:05
3. Mauro Finetto (Neri Sottoli)
12. Davide Rebellin 0:14
24. Nikolay Mihaylov 6:54
76. Jacek Morajko 17:42
79. Adrian Kurek
80. Tomasz Kiendys
115. Jarosław Marycz 23:59
127. Pawel Charucki
136. Piotr Gawronski 24:05