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Tour de Pologne: Paluta still in pink, Franczak 16th in Zabrze

For the second time in 75th edition of Tour de Pologne, Michał Paluta was active and present in the breakaway, extending his lead in King of the Mountains Classification.

Info: August 6th, Chorzów (Silesian Stadium) – Zabrze, 139km

Course: flat

It was a football-themed day at Tour de Pologne with the start at the legendary Silesian Stadium and the finish by the arena of one of the I division teams, Górnik Zabrze. That was also were Alan Banaszek sprinted to 8th place in last year’s edition.

One of the early breakaway attempts was successful, and Michał Paluta was among the lucky attackers. He went clear with Mathias Le Tournier, Alexander Foliforov, and after a long and lone chase, Most Active jersey wearer, Jenthe Biermans, also managed to bridge to the leading group. Their highest recorded gap was 4 minutes.

Paluta added another point to his tally, after winning the only cat. 4 KOM, so he was certain to stand on the podium after the stage. Biermans strengthened his lead as well, as he won two intermediate sprints and took 2nd at the first one. CCC Sprandi Polkowice rider also did very well, as he collected 4 seconds of bonification which put him in 5th place overall.

It was quite a challenge to get into the breakaway today. We tried together with Kamil Gradek, but it was me who was lucky enough to go clear. The quality of the break was strong today and we maintained a solid pace. I attacked at KOM for another point and at intermediate sprints I was battling it out against Biermansem. I couldn’t beat him, but I was able to gain another 4 seconds to move up in the overall standings. In the end, when I knew that we were going to be caught, I was trying to save as much energy to not get dropped in the finale and not lose any time in GC.

Paluta and the rest of the breakaway was reeled back in with exactly 10km to go. As expected, the winner came from a bunch finish and riders in orange were pulling hard in the end to place Paweł Franczak in a good spot. Eventually he finished in 16th place, while Alvaro Hodeg got the win. Young sprinter bested Daniel McClay and Andre Greipel.