The terrain of today's 6th stage was rarely really flat, up and down again and again, but still a bunch sprint was expected. The route over 190,5k was awarded with 3 KOM's and 1 Sprint.
Jan Barta from BORA – ARGON 18 and Yukiya Arashiro (Lampre – Merida) were the first who attacked successfully and went clear from the peloton. They extended their lead at race kilometre 10 for about 3 minutes to the bunch.
Jan won the first, the last KOM and also the sprint, but 20k before the finish line the two breakaway riders were caught from the peloton which was lead from the sprinter teams yet again. Of course Jan was a big contender to get the red number of the most aggressive rider today, but it was the decision of the jury to give it to the Japanese rider Yukia Arashiro.
Shane Archbold took over today again the role of sprinter Sam Bennett, who is still recovering from his crash. For Sam it was the first day without antibiotics, which is the next step in his recovery.
Shane in the end was involved in a great bunch sprint with Kittel and Cavendish and took the 10th place. He was a little blocked with 300m to go, but it is great so see how he adapts to his new role.
„For sure the last k´s were very crazy and a new experience for me to sprint with the fastest guy´s of the world. I still have to learn how a mange to get in the right position without taking the risk of a crash. But I’m very happy with this result.“ – Shane Archbold
“You have to give the riders the freedom and to motivate them to go in a leading group. Clearly it is the decision of the riders to be at the right place to the right time, and you need also a little bit of luck. The riders will always go full-gas if they are in a leading group, but you`ve to pay attention to the race situation or even the wind, and so you`ve to decide if it makes sense or not. Today we kept Jan back a little to save energy for the 2nd and 3rd week because than we still want to be able to go into breakaway groups.” – Enrico Poitschke