Tour of Hainan: Stępniak 6th on the last stage, Owsian moved up to top 15 overall

Grzegorz Stępniak finished off Tour of Hainan with 6th place on the last stage. Łukasz Owsian advanced in the general classification to the top 15, thanks to bonus seconds gained at intermediate sprint. 

The final stage was relatively short, since it was 118-kilometer long. There were two intermediate sprints on the course and since the margins in general classification were very slim, many riders wanted to claim some extra seconds. Because of that the peloton was not letting anyone go clear and after 60 kilometers of racing it was still all together. CCC Sprandi Polkowice riders were among the most aggressive riders early on.

First sprint was taken by Evaldasa Siskeviciusa (Team Marseille 13 KTM). At the second, it was Łukasz Owsian who grabbed 3 seconds. He attacked few kilometers before the sprint with two other riders and managed to maintain his advantage until the prime.

Adrian Honkisz took part in the next move. He broke clear alongside two other Asian riders, but after establishing around 30-second lead, they were all reeled back in with 33 kilometers remaining.

The finale was very fast and nobody was able to create a gap. In the end it got a little big chaotic after a crash which involved around 25 riders. There were no “riders in orange” among them and they could safely complete the race.

Grzegorz Stępniak finished 6th in the last battle of sprinters. Brenton Jones (Drapac) conquered the victory outsprinting Fabio Silvestre (Trek Factory) and Benjamin Giraud (Team Marseille 13 KTM).

Sacha Modolo (Lampre-Merida) held on to his overall lead and took the win. He was joined on the podium by Andrey Zeits (Astana) and Julien El Fares (Team Marseille 13 KTM). Łukasz Owsian moved up in the rankings to 14th place (36 seconds back). Adrian Honkisz and Jarosław Marycz also made the top 20, by claiming 17th and 18th place respectively.

We can be satisfied with our performance, with how our riders were fighting, although the general classification doesn’t reflect that. Places in the top 20 in GC were not something we had hoping for, since our goal was top 5 or top 10. Few times we were also near the podium on the stages, but we didn’t manage to take a win, which we were aiming at – Tomasz Brożyna, sporting director of CCC Spandi Polkowice, summed up the Tour of Hainan.