Deceuninck – Quick-Step’s 23-year-old Portuguese remains second overall ahead of the ITT.
The longest stage of the Tour de Luxembourg travelled from Mondorf-Les-Bains, the country’s famous spa town, to Mamer, over 189.3 rolling kilometers, and had in the spotlight a six-man breakaway whose gap, despite hovering around the three-minute mark, forced the field to work hard in order to reel them in.
As they entered the final five kilometers, the bunch could see the remaining escapees up the road, but the quartet fought tooth and nail to hold them off and they almost managed it, getting reabsorbed only 800 meters from the line. João Almeida came home with the peloton, having been protected from start to finish by his Deceuninck – Quick-Step teammates, and remained at the top of the points classification.
“The pace was high today, but I had an easy ride thanks to the team, who did a great effort for me. Coming into the final kilometer, I felt good and wanted to sprint, but it turned out to be very messy and I got boxed in, so I had to brake. Now I will recover and focus on the individual time trial. I am confident ahead of it and will give my best to try and retake the yellow jersey, but it will all depend on how the legs will respond”, said João, who sits just four seconds from the overall lead.
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