After a bunch sprint, Magnus Cort Nielsen (ORICA-Scott) took the win in stage 3 of Volta a la Comunitat Valenciana. Maciej Paterski was the fastest among “riders in orange”.
Info: Stage 3, February 3rd, Canals – Riba-Roja de Túria, 161km
Weather: sunny, windy
Course: slightly undulating, flat and twisty finale
What was going to be a day for the sprinters, started off with forming a 6-man breakaway of the day. First it was Alexis Gougeard (AG2R La Mondiale ), Aitor Gonzalez (Euskadi Basque Country – Murias ), Tyler Williams (Israel Cycling Academy) and Aitor Amores (Inteja Dominican Cycling Team) to go clear, and later they were joined by Daniel López (Burgos-BH) and Ben Perry (Israel Cycling Academy). Together they gained an advantage of 3:30.
Peloton, led by leader’s team, BMC Racing and Cofidis, which wanted to bring the race to a sprint finish, made sure to control the gap. Halfway through the stage the lead was down to 2 minutes and it was certain that the escape’s chances of going all the way were almost non-existent.
With around 35km to go Jos Van Emden (Team LottoNL-Jumbo) and Elmar Reinders (Roompot – Nederlandse Loterij) took advantage of a wind, attacked from the bunch and joined the leaders. Later Van Emden pulled away and went away solo.
He’s brave ride in the front ended with 11km remaining, when everything came back together. The last part of the stage was all about positioning for the final sprint. It was quite twisty and tricky finale and CCC Sprandi Polkowice riders didn’t manage to stay up front to contest the sprint (Maciej Paterski was the first “man in orange” at the line, in 39th place).
It came down to battle between Magnus Cort Nielsen (ORICA-Scott) and Nacer Bouhanni (Cofidis) and the victory went to the former.Bryan Couqard (Direct Energie) finished third.