Dylan Teuns rides into Vuelta leader’s jersey
There seems to be something about 6th stages of Grand Tours that give the BAHRAIN MERIDA PRO CYCLING TEAM’s Belgian Dylan Teuns a motivational boost: He already had won the 6th stage of this year’s Tour de France, and now Teuns finished the Vuelta’s 6th stage in 2nd place. Thanks to this performance he managed to take over the leader’s jersey.
The BAHRAIN MERIDA PRO CYCLING TEAM had to deal with a serious set-back in the run-up to this year’s Vuelta a España: As its designated captain for the third grand Tour of the season, Domenico Pozzovivo got hit by a car on a training ride, sustaining serious injuries. Thus the team was forced to improvise, and it decided to send a team to Spain that was built around sprinter Phil Bauhaus and young Ukrainian Mark Padun. The team can rely on two more strong climbers with Dylan Teuns and Hermann Pernsteiner and the support of Luka Pibernik, Domen Novak, Heinrich Haussler and Yukiya Arashiro.
In the initial team time trial the team conceded 26 seconds to the fastest team of the day, but on the next day the combination of the extraordinary heat and a demanding finale that was ridden at a brutal pace by the overall contenders proved to be a bit too much: With Mark Padun, Dylan Teuns and Hermann Pernsteiner, the three fastest riders of the BAHRAIN MERIDA PRO CYCLING TEAM all lost 1.43 minutes to the day’s winner, crossing the finish line in the third group on the road. The next two stages ended in bunch sprints, with Phil Bauhaus scoring a first top5 result in stage 3 with a 5th place. The first mountaintop finish served up another set-back, however: Hermann Pernsteiner and Dylan Teuns were the only riders to lose less than three minutes to the best overall contenders.
The next day offered a chance to make amends, and the riders of the BAHRAIN MERIDA PRO CYCLING TEAM were in an attacking mood: Hermann Pernsteiner was the first rider of the team to make it into a lead group but was caught by the peloton soon after. Dylan Teuns had better luck, getting away with ten other riders. This group proved to be strong enough and joined forces long enough to stay away all the way to the finish. An attack of two riders on the penultimate was neutralized at the bottom of the final ascent. From there Dylan Teuns bided his time to place a powerful counter that only Jesus Herrada could follow. The latter won the stage, sprinting away from Teuns on the last kilometre. The Belgian crossed the finish line 7 seconds adrift in 2nd, and since the group of overall contenders conceded close to six minutes, Dylan Teuns managed to take over the red leader’s jersey, a premiere for the team in a Grand Tour.
At the same time as the first week of the Vuelta a España, the four-stage Deutschland Tour is being raced. For this race, the BAHRAIN MERIDA PRO CYCLING TEAM fields a strong six-rider team around Vincenzo Nibali and Sonny Colbrelli. These two can rely on the support of Damiano Caruso, Andrea Garosio, Antonio Nibali and Marcel Sieberg. Since Matej Mohoric had won last year’s edition the team was presented as the defending champion. As expected the first stage ended in a bunch sprint. Since his lead-out rider Marcel Sieberg had suffered a mechanical in the finale, Sonny Colbrelli had no choice but to improvise on the finishing straight, losing some ground before upping his pace and saving a top10 result with a 10th place.
74. VUELTA A ESPAÑA
STAGE 6: MORA DEL RUBIELOS - ARES DEL MAESTRAT, 198.9KM
1. Jesus Herrada, ESP, in 4:43.55 hours
2. Dylan Teuns, BEL/BAHRAIN MERIDA PRO CYCLING TEAM, + 0.07
3. Dorian Godon, FRA, + 0.21
OVERALL STANDINGS AFTER SIX STAGES:
1. Dylan Teuns, BEL/BAHRAIN MERIDA PRO CYCLING TEAM, in 23:44.00 hours
2. David de la Cruz, ESP, + 0.38
3. Miguel Angel Lopez, COL, + 1.00