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Chris Froome 26 minutes behind Egan Bernal as Primoz Roglic wins Tour de l’Ain

Chris Froome and Egan Bernal
Egan Bernal won last year’s Tour de France, which Chris Froome missed through injury

Chris Froome finished the Tour de l’Ain 26 minutes behind Tour de France rival and Ineos team-mate Egan Bernal.

Bernal finished second in the race, 18 seconds behind winner Jumbo-Visma’s Primoz Roglic, with Froome 41st.

The race across the l’Ain region of France is the second of three crucial races which will decide who will be selected by Ineos for the Tour, which begins on 29 August.

The final race is the Criterium du Dauphine on 12 August.

Roglic won Sunday’s final stage of the three-day event up the Grand Colombier climb, four seconds ahead of Bernal and six seconds ahead of Arkea-Samsic’s Nairo Quintana.

Slovenian Roglic’s win caps an eventful week for Jumbo-Visma, who won Saturday’s Milan-San Remo one-day ‘monument’ race and last Saturday’s Strade Bianche through Wout van Aert.

Their sprinter Dylan Groenewegen was also involved in the horrifying crash which left Fabio Jakobsen in a coma and requiring plastic surgery to his face during a sprint at the end of the first stage of the Tour of Poland on Wednesday.

Jakobsen’s team-mate Remco Evenepoel won the Tour of Poland, with Britain’s Simon Yates of Michelton-Scott third.

Bernal’s Ineos team-mates and fellow former Tour de France winners Geraint Thomas and Froome both lost time on Saturday, with the Welshman finishing over four minutes back on Roglic and Froome particularly struggling, losing 12 minutes.

Froome, 35, and Thomas worked as domestiques to support Bernal, 23, on Sunday’s stage to help fight for victory.

Froome, who will join Israel Start-Up Nation at the end of the season, finished nearly 10 minutes behind race winner Bernal at last week’s Route d’Occitanie.

Analysis

BBC Sport’s Matt Warwick

It’s not looking good for Froome. What, in normal circumstances, would be mere warm-up races for the four-time Tour winner are, in the post lockdown sporting world, now a shoot-out with Bernal to see who goes to this year’s Tour.

The reason? Team Ineos will probably not want to take all three of their former Tour winners – Froome, reigning champion Bernal and 2018 winner Thomas – to avoid too complex a dynamic interrupting their metronomic progress up the climbs during cycling’s greatest race.

Bernal is in fine form, having won the first race and commanding a supporting role from Thomas during this race – setting an agenda for the Tour that Froome can only interrupt by beating Bernal in next week’s Dauphine.

And it was the Dauphine last year which started Froome’s troubles, when he had his horrifying crash and from which he is still trying to fight back to top form.

That form was improving on Sunday. Just as well – this coming week will define Froome’s year.

Tour de l’Ain stage 3 result

1. Primoz Roglic (Slo/Team Jumbo-Visma) 4hours 6mins 24secs

2. Egan Bernal (Col/Team Ineos) +4secs

3 Nairo Quintana (Col/Team Arkea Samsic) +6secs

4. Guillaume Martin (Fra/Cofidis) +8secs

5. Richie Porte (Aus/Trek-Segafredo) same time

6. Steven Kruijswijk (Ned/Team Jumbo-Visma) +23secs

Selected other: 30. Chris Froome (GB/Team Ineos) +12mins 16secs

Tour de l’Ain general classification

1. Primoz Roglic (Slo/Team Jumbo-Visma) 11hours 21mins 12secs

2. Egan Bernal (Col/Team Ineos) +18secs

3 Nairo Quintana (Col/Team Arkea Samsic) +28secs

4. Steven Kruijswijk (Ned/Team Jumbo-Visma) +56secs

5. George Bennett (NZ/Team Jumbo-Visma) +1min 27sec

6. Bauke Mollema (Ned/Trek-Segafredo) +2min 24secs

Selected other: 41. Chris Froome (GB/Team Ineos) +26mins 45secs

Article source: http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/cycling/53700051

Milan San-Remo: Wout van Aert wins thrilling first monument

Wout van Aert (right) holds his hands out in celebration after beating Julian Alaphilippe (left) to win the 2020 Milan San-Remo
Wout van Aert edges out Julian Alaphilippe on the line

Belgium’s Wout van Aert beat defending champion Julian Alaphilippe in a thrilling sprint finish to win his first Milan-San Remo title in Italy.

Frenchman Alaphilippe attacked to lead the race solo over the final climb with 5.5km to go but Van Aert reeled him in on the descent.

They held off the chasers into San Remo, with Alaphilippe kicking for the line first, but Van Aert powered home.

Elsewhere, Chris Froome again struggled and lost time at the Tour de l’Ain.

And Belgium’s Remco Evenepoel dedicated his solo victory on stage four of the Tour of Poland to Deceuninck-Quick-Step team-mate Fabio Jakobsen.

It is a second win in as many weeks for Jumbo-Visma rider Van Aert, 25, following victory in Strade-Bianche, the first World Tour race held after the season was delayed by the coronavius pandemic.

This is his first victory in a ‘monument’ classic – cycling’s five oldest and most prestigious one-day races.

“I’m super happy – I can’t believe I’ve taken these these two victories in a row,” said Van Aert.

“I don’t have words actually – I know everyone says that when they win a monument but to start the second part of the season like this, it’s crazy.”

The race was scheduled to be held on 21 March but was postponed because of the pandemic, with the 305km route also changed to run more inland after coastal towns opted against closing their roads in favour of keeping them open for tourists.

The course did still contain the traditional final two climbs of the Cipressa and the Poggio, with Bora-Hansgrohe’s Daniel Oss going clear on the former before he was caught.

Gianluca Brambilla and Aime de Gendt then attacked on the Poggio, with the latter briefly going solo, before Deceuninck-Quick-Step’s Alaphilippe and then Van Aert came past to contest the finish, with Australia’s Michael Matthews claiming third.

Froome falters again

Slovenia’s Primoz Roglic held off Tour de France champion Egan Bernal by 12 seconds to win stage two of the Tour de l’Ain and take the leader’s jersey.

Bernal’s Ineos team-mates Geraint Thomas and Froome both lost time, with the Welshman finishing over four minutes back on Roglic and Froome particularly struggling, losing 12 minutes in France.

Froome, who will join Israel Start-Up Nation at the end of the season, finished nearly 10 minutes behind race winner Bernal at last week’s Route d’Occitanie.

Britain’s four-time Tour winner Froome, 35, risks not being selected for this year’s race, which starts on 29 August, if his form is not deemed strong enough.

The third and final stage of the Tour de l’Ain takes place on Sunday.

In Poland, 20-year-old Evenepoel attacked with 51km to go and stayed clear to the line, holding up the bib number 75 of Dutchman Jakobsen as he crossed the line.

Jakobsen, who had facial surgery after a high-speed crash on stage one of the race, is now out of a coma and in a good condition, but is expected to face a long recovery.

Milan San-Remo top 10

1. Wout van Aert (Bel/Team Jumbo-Visma) 7hours 16mins 09secs

2. Julian Alaphilippe (Fra/Deceuninck-QuickStep) Same time

3 Michael Matthews (Aus/Team Sunweb) +2secs

4. Peter Sagan (Svk/Bora-Hansgrohe) Same time

5. Giacomo Nizzolo (Ita/NTT Pro Cycling)

6. Dion Smith (NZ/Mitchelton-Scott)

7. Alex Aranburu (Spa/Astana Pro Team)

8. Greg van Avermaet (Bel/CCC Team)

9. Philippe Gilbert (Bel/Lotto-Soudal)

10. Matej Mohoric (Slo/Bahrain-McLaren)

Article source: http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/cycling/53708012

Fabio Jakobsen: Dylan Groenewegen apologises for crash

Dutch sprinters Fabio Jakobsen (far left) and Dylan Groenewegen (left) collide just before the line in a crash on stage one of the Tour of Poland
Dutch sprinters Fabio Jakobsen (far left) and Dylan Groenewegen (second left, in yellow) collided just before the line

Dutch cyclist Dylan Groenewegen has apologised for the crash that left compatriot Fabio Jakobsen in a coma.

Groenewegen drifted across the road before he and Jakobsen collided near the finish line during stage one of the Tour of Poland on Wednesday.

Jakobsen, 23, was airlifted to hospital and has had facial surgery.

“I find it terrible what happened,” Groenewegen, 27, said. “I can’t find the words to describe how sorry I am for Fabio and the others involved.

“What matters most now is Fabio’s health. I think about him all the time.”

Jakobsen’s team Deceuninck-QuickStep said on Wednesday that initial tests “didn’t reveal brain or spinal injury” and that his condition was stable.

World champion Mads Pedersen won stage two on Thursday and dedicated the victory to Jakobsen.

“I dedicate this win to Jakobsen and wish him a speedy recovery, hope he gets back to a normal life and back to cycling,” he said.

Jumbo-Visma sprinter Groenewegen, who was named as the winner of stage one before being disqualified, has had surgery on a broken collarbone after he and several other riders also fell after crossing the line.

Cycling’s governing body UCI said it “strongly condemns the dangerous behaviour of Groenewegen”.

Richard Plugge, managing director of Jumbo-Visma, said he had visited Groenewegen in hospital and “let him tell his story briefly”.

“For him, the recovery of Fabio and the others who were injured in this terrible crash is all that counts now,” Plugge added.

“Soon we will discuss the incident in detail with him. Our thoughts are with the victims and we hope with all our heart for a good recovery.”

Article source: http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/cycling/53682454

Fabio Jakobsen out of coma and in good condition

Dutch sprinters Fabio Jakobsen (far left) and Dylan Groenewegen (left) collide just before the line in a crash on stage one of the Tour of Poland
Dutch sprinters Fabio Jakobsen (far left) and Dylan Groenewegen (second left, in yellow) collided just before the line

Dutch rider Fabio Jakobsen is out of a coma and in a “good” condition, according to the Tour of Poland organisers.

The 23-year-old was involved in a high-speed crash at the finish of the opening stage of the race on Wednesday.

Jakobsen had facial surgery, but his Deceuninck-QuickStep team denied he had suffered head and brain injuries.

“Fabio Jakobsen is awake now from the coma. Condition is good,” read a tweet from race organisers.external-link

Jakobsen’s compatriot Dylan Groenewegen apologised for causing the crash.

The 27-year-old Jumbo-Visma rider, who was criticised by governing body the UCI, drifted across the road as he contested the sprint finish in Katowice.

‘This win is for Fabio’

Bagioli
Bagioli dedicated his debut win to his injured team-mate

Deceuninck-QuickStep team-mate Andrea Bagioli dedicated his first professional victory to Jakobsen after sprinting home on the opening stage of the Tour de l’Ain in Ceyzeriat on Friday.

“Thanks to my team. This win is for Fabio,” he said.

Team Ineos’ general classification contenders Geraint Thomas and Egan Bernal finished alongside the leaders in a bunch finish, but Chris Froome, who is leaving the team for Israel Start-Up Nation at the end of 2020, lost time on his rivals.

The three-day race concludes at the top of Grand Colombier on Sunday.

Article source: http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/cycling/53694425

Tour of Poland crash: Fabio Jakobsen has facial surgery and remains in coma

Dutch sprinters Fabio Jakobsen (far left) and Dylan Groenewegen (left) collide just before the line in a crash on stage one of the Tour of Poland
Dutch sprinters Fabio Jakobsen (far left) and Dylan Groenewegen (second left, in yellow) collided just before the line

Dutch rider Fabio Jakobsen has had facial surgery and doctors will try to wake him from a coma later on Thursday, says his Deceuninck-QuickStep team.

Jakobsen remains stable, having been taken to hospital on Wednesday following a high-speed crash on stage one of the Tour of Poland.

Dylan Groenewegen drifted across the road before he and compatriot Jakobsen collided close to the finish line.

Jakobsen, 23, hit the barriers before striking an official stood by the line.

“His condition is very severe. There is a danger to his life,” said race doctor Barbara Jerschina on Wednesday.

“Unfortunately, it is quite a serious injury to the head and brain. He has lost a lot of blood. He is very strong. I hope he will survive.”

Deceuninck-QuickStep said on Wednesday that initial tests “didn’t reveal brain or spinal injury”.

“Fabio Jakobsen’s situation is serious but at the moment he is stable,” read a team statement.

“Because of the gravity of his multiple injuries, he is still kept in a comatose condition and has to remain closely monitored in the following days.”

Jumbo-Visma sprinter Groenewegen, who was named as the stage winner before being disqualified, and several other riders also fell after crossing the line.

Jerschina said the race official struck in the incident suffered head and spinal injuries but was speaking when he was taken to hospital.

Cycling’s governing body UCI said it “strongly condemns the dangerous behaviour of Groenewegen”.

A statement read:external-link “The UCI, which considers the behaviour unacceptable, immediately referred the matter to the disciplinary commission to request the imposition of sanctions commensurate with the seriousness of the facts.”

Jumbo-Visma said: “Our thoughts go out to Fabio Jakobsen and other people involved in today’s terrible crash in the Tour of Poland – crashes like these should not happen.

“We offer our sincere apologies and we will discuss internally what has happened before we may make any further statement.”

The podium ceremony was cancelled and the results of the 195.8km stage from Stadion Slaski have not been released.

Fabio Jakobsen celebrates victory in the opening stage of the Volta ao Algarve in February
Jakobsen won the opening stage of the Volta ao Algarve in February

Article source: http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/cycling/53671028

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