Quick-Step Floors leave the race with two wins, after having been a protagonist throughout the week.
Going into the final day of the Deutschland Tour, Maximilian Schachmann knew he had to attack in order to make up the deficit on overall leader Matej Mohoric (Bahrain-Merida), who had a six-second buffer ahead of the 207.5km-long leg between Lorsch – a town famous for its former Imperial Abbey, the oldest monument of Carolingian architecture – and Stuttgart, twice host of the World Road Championships, in 1991 and 2007.
For that very reason, Quick-Step Floors went on the attack early, sending Rémi Cavagna in the breakaway where he was joined by two other riders, enjoying a six-minute advantage before the peloton began upping the pace and reducing it to a minute by the time they entered the first lap of the Stuttgart circuit, where Rémi took off, going solo and remaining on the front until the tough slopes of the Herdweg climb, the main hurdle of the 2007 World Championships.
It was on the second ascent that our team went all in, at first with neo-pro James Knox, who opened a gap on the red jersey group, thus paving the way for an attack of Maximilian Schachmann; the 24-year-old German put in a massive dig, dropped overall leader Matej Mohoric (Bahrain-Merida) and claimed three bonus seconds at the top of Herdweg, before plunging onto the descent.
Always at the head of a newly-formed group containing a total of seven riders, Max ignored his companions' lack of commitment, taking mammoth pulls at the front and riding his wheels off in an attempt of keeping the chasers at bay. Eventually, a regrouping took place under the flamme rouge and Nils Politt (Katusha-Alpecin) sprinted to the win, while Mohoric retained his jersey.
Tenth in Stuttgart after an admirable effort which earned him a big round of applause from his countrymen, Max Schachmann concluded the 33rd edition of the Deutschland Tour in third place overall, a result that came just a week after riding to fourth at the BinckBank Tour and which cemented his status as one of the up-and-rising stage race stars.
"I am a bit disappointed, but on the other hand I am proud and happy with my performance, because I went for the win today. The team did a great job, supporting me this week and showing the same fantastic Wolfpack spirit, as we made the race again and did our best to get the victory. Racing in Germany in front of so many fans and getting a win on the hardest stage of the Deutschland Tour was really special, and I hope to be back in the future for more", said a smiling Max, one of the two Quick-Step Floors riders to take a stage at the Deutschland Tour, which opened with Alvaro Hodeg's victory in Bonn.
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