9 Jul 2019

The Tourist, Simon Clarke's diary, Ep.3

It’s wasn’t too much to juggle stage ambitions with overall ambitions today. With Bettiol out with a puncture, Woodsy raced for his own ambitions and the rest of us supported Rigo. Everything went to plan apart from Rigo losing a few seconds in the sprint. Those uphill finishes are always tricky. If you’re a couple positions back, it can be costly.

It was unfortunate that Bettiol punctured with 25km to go. That took him out of the race.
Today the stress level were a bit higher than they have been. The first 150 kilometers were reasonably straightforward and stress-free but the last hour more than made up for that with some pretty technical racing. We negotiated that well and safely delivered the boys to the finish, so it was all good for us. 
They are my kind of roads. I was at home out there today, especially in the last section It was important for us all to stay composed and identify the important moments to have Rigo up front and to conserve energy at the other moments. 

That last kicker at the finish was STEEP — even though the road book said 8% for 500 meters…well, let’s say it was slightly different. 

We share the work. The idea was for Woodsy to take the opportunity to get in front of the race. On tricky technical roads, sometimes being in front of the roads isn’t a bad thing. Having Rigo and Tejay in the group, it didn’t hurt us at all having someone try to get on the front foot. The guy that did that, he won. Had he gone with Alaphilippe, it would have been the winning move. 

It was up to me to keep Rigo in the box seat in the finish.