Overview

UAE Tour

Stage 3) UAE University - Jebel Hafeet

AE United Arab Emirates, Tuesday 26 February 2019
179 km

Outstanding effort sees Knox make inroads in UAE Tour GC

Outstanding effort sees Knox make inroads in UAE Tour GC

After a 2018 season he described as a tough but important learning curve, James Knox is on the edge of breakthrough, just two months into his second year with the pros and in a World Tour race which boasts a star-studded field.

A towering rocky mountain, which stands guard over Al Ain and borders Oman, Jebel Hafeet is the emirate’s highest peak and the UAE’s second, and it was here that the young Cumbrian put in a mature ride and valiant effort which saw him finish half a minute behind stage winner Alejandro Valverde (Movistar), in a strong eighth that helped him make a jump of 26 places in the general classification.

The race, an unexpectedly quiet one until the only climb of the day, exploded with five kilometres to go, when a couple of powerful attacks were launched from what was left of the peloton. Knox found himself in the fourth group, but staged a remarkable comeback and with less than three kilometres left he was in a small group which included also the world champion.

Dosing his effort carefully, the 23-year-old managed to remain with the more experienced riders and even had enough left in the legs to sprint out of the last corner and take his second top 10 finish at World Tour level, a result which helped him move up to ninth in the overall classification. Twenty seconds in arrears, teammate Remco Evenepoel – who was dropped with six kilometers remaining, but found the resources to limit the losses and even make up ground – concluded the stage in an impressive 15th place, ahead of several GC contenders.

“I’m very happy with today’s result and very pleased with how I performed, as I did more than I thought I could do”, a smiling James said after his outstanding result on the 10.8km-long climb which had a maximum gradient of 11%. “To come eighth, ahead of so many big names, riders around I’ve never been around before, makes me very content. Together with Dries and Remco, I had a free role from the team today and gave it a go. The start of the climb was difficult, but I managed to claw my way back to the main group. Then, in the last kilometers, I was suffering, but stayed there and had a bit of sprint to finish inside the top 10, which gives me a lot of satisfaction.”

 

Photo credit: ©Justin Setterfield/ Getty Images

Race details

1 Alejandro Valverde Belmonte
Movistar Team
4:44:50
2 Primož Roglič
Team Jumbo-Visma
,,
3 David Gaudu
Groupama - FDJ
,,
4 Emanuel Buchmann
BORA - hansgrohe
0:04
5 Dan Martin
UAE-Team Emirates
0:12
6 Davide Formolo
BORA - hansgrohe
0:33
7 Ilnur Zakarin
Team Katusha - Alpecin
,,
8 James Knox
Deceuninck - Quick Step
0:35
9 Bauke Mollema
Trek - Segafredo
,,
10 Jan Hirt
Astana Pro Team
,,
15 Remco Evenepoel
Deceuninck - Quick Step
0:56
36 Dries Devenyns
Deceuninck - Quick Step
2:21
78 Fabio Sabatini
Deceuninck - Quick Step
11:10
97 Michael Mørkøv Christensen
Deceuninck - Quick Step
,,
100 Mikkel Frølich Honoré
Deceuninck - Quick Step
,,
133 Elia Viviani
Deceuninck - Quick Step
,,
1 Primož Roglič
Team Jumbo-Visma
9:38:05
2 Alejandro Valverde Belmonte
Movistar Team
0:14
3 David Gaudu
Groupama - FDJ
0:31
4 Emanuel Buchmann
BORA - hansgrohe
0:39
5 Wilco Kelderman
Team Sunweb
0:47
6 Dan Martin
UAE-Team Emirates
0:54
7 Tom Dumoulin
Team Sunweb
0:57
8 Víctor de la Parte González
CCC Team
1:05
9 James Knox
Deceuninck - Quick Step
1:07
10 Davide Formolo
BORA - hansgrohe
1:08
17 Remco Evenepoel
Deceuninck - Quick Step
1:28
33 Dries Devenyns
Deceuninck - Quick Step
,,
74 Fabio Sabatini
Deceuninck - Quick Step
11:42
94 Elia Viviani
Deceuninck - Quick Step
17:28
99 Michael Mørkøv Christensen
Deceuninck - Quick Step
,,
102 Mikkel Frølich Honoré
Deceuninck - Quick Step
17:41
1 Stepan Kurianov
Gazprom-RusVelo
26 pt
2 Alejandro Valverde Belmonte
Movistar Team
20 pt
3 Fernando Gaviria Rendon
UAE-Team Emirates
20 pt
4 Charles Planet
Team Novo Nordisk
19 pt
5 Primož Roglič
Team Jumbo-Visma
16 pt
6 Elia Viviani
Deceuninck - Quick Step
16 pt
7 David Gaudu
Groupama - FDJ
12 pt
8 Caleb Ewan
Lotto Soudal
12 pt
9 Emanuel Buchmann
BORA - hansgrohe
9 pt
10 Kristoffer Halvorsen
Team Sky
9 pt
20 James Knox
Deceuninck - Quick Step
3 pt
1 David Gaudu
Groupama - FDJ
9:38:36
2 James Knox
Deceuninck - Quick Step
0:36
3 Laurens De Plus
Team Jumbo-Visma
0:52
4 Remco Evenepoel
Deceuninck - Quick Step
0:57
5 Gianni Moscon
Team Sky
0:58
6 Maximilian Schachmann
BORA - hansgrohe
1:08
7 Pavel Sivakov
Team Sky
1:22
8 Aurélien Paret-Peintre
AG2R La Mondiale
2:09
9 Niklas Eg
Trek - Segafredo
2:36
10 Artem Nych
Gazprom-RusVelo
3:21
25 Mikkel Frølich Honoré
Deceuninck - Quick Step
17:10

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