Davide Rebellin finished 9th in the uphill sprint which finalized stage 5 of Tour of Turkey. Due to small gaps created at the finish, the Italian strengthen his position in the lead of GC.
I felt very well today, although I had to be careful since the route was not the most simple one. I wanted to stay at the front all day to avoid any stressful situations. It was important in the finale to also be in one of the first rows in the group. I knew that the last uphill kilometer will be tricky and hard. Besides, a crash occurred there, but I managed to pass it on the left – Davide Rebellin said afterwards.
Tomorrow is the second mountain stage of the race, very important in terms of the final GC. Many riders will try to attack at the bottom of the last climb and I’m expecting Durasek and McCarthy to be among them. I feel strong and confident ahead of that stage though.
The 160km stage from Mugla to the famous Pamukkale was another one, where CCC Sprandi Polkowice was protecting the leader jersey. The entire “orange eight”, with Davide Rebellin in the middle, was riding at the front, being one of the teams to set up the pace.
The bunch was chasing down the leading trio – Thomas De Gendt (Lotto), Alessandro Bazzana (UHC) and Frederick Veuchelen (Wanty). Early on their advantage reached over 7 minutes, but was brought back down to only 1:30 with 55 km to go. The break was caught 5 kilometers later.
Another move included 9 riders (De Bie, Howson, Appollonio, Brun, Ferrari, Berhane, Jim, Van Meirhaeghe and Akdilek) but the bunch led by CCC Sprandi Polkowice and sprinters’ teams let them gain only 20 seconds.
The final 20 kilometers were very lively and saw many attacks. They were all neutralized and the peloton approached the last kilometer all together. The road towards the line was going slightly up and it didn’t suit pure sprinters. In a very close sprint Sacha Modolo took the win. Davide Rebellin stayed concentrated and pushed strong all the way to the end. He finished 9th, in the first group, which created a small gap. Because of that he gained extra seconds on his overall rivals.