Breschel on song in Spain
Moreno keeps hold of race lead
Last Updated: August 3, 2012 4:50pm
Matti Breschel: Broken the stranglehold of Daniel Moreno with a win on stage three
Matti Breschel put in a strong performance to take victory in the sprint on stage three at the Vuelta a Burgos.
The Dane was first into the final corner as the peloton tore into Lerma, holding off rivals Nacer Bouhanni (FDJ-BigMat) and Team Sky’s Ben Swift on the cobbled finishing straight, each rider fighting to position themselves on the thin strip of tarmac down the middle of the road.
The victory was the first of the season for Breschel after his Rabobank squad had been among an intense fight in the final kilometres to set up the sprint.
It took Team Sky finally arriving on the front inside the final 20 kilometres to drag back the break which had been clear for most of the day.
With the peloton splitting behind a final corner crash it was Daniel Moreno (Katusha) who benefitted from the bunch sprint to maintain a two-second advantage at the top of the standings over Sergio Henao (Team Sky).
Unsurprisingly the sprinters were ready for action ahead of 159km of action as the race rolled out of Santo Domingo De Silos.
On the road it was David Lopez (Movistar), Jose Vicente Toribio (Andalucia) and Alessandro Donati (Acqua & Sapone) making tracks early, opening out a maximum advantage of 5:22 to form the day’s breakaway.
Katusha helped to control the peloton on behalf of Moreno alongside Team Sky and Liquigas-Cannondale with things hotting up as the race closed in on the finish.
With the peloton drawing closer Lopez pushed onwards, while Paul Martens (Rabobank) was among those riders who tried and jump clear on the third category Alto del Majadal.
Katusha hit the front with numbers before Juan Antonio Flecha and Team Sky took up the gauntlet, the margin to the escapees tumbling in the process.
Yet at the finish it was Breschel who marked a return to form ahead of the Vuelta a Espana with a resounding victory.