Another day, another win for the Bora-Hansgrohe rider Sam Bennett at the Vuelta a España. With each progressing day, he continues to prove why he is known as the fastest sprinter. It was more like watching stag 2 repeat itself, where Sam gave a run to Mads Pedersen (Trek-Segafredo). The only difference was that even Pedersen wasn’t ready to accept defeat that easily this time He gave Bennett quite a close call.
Stage 3 set out at Breda, on 21 August, Sunday. Pedersen finished second, followed by Dan McLay (Arkea-Samsic). Pascal Ackermann (UAE Team Emirates) launched an early sprint but he was nowhere to be seen at the finishing line. Tim Merlier (Alpecin-Deceuninck) met the same fate, as he lost contact with his lead-out man. Bryan Coquard (Cofidis) managed to take the fourth spot on the finishing line.
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Although the 31-year-old had to face a tough time one year prior to coming to the Vuelta, He not only came on to the top as the one having the strongest lead-out, but he also proved to be the fastest one to finish. Danny van Poppel did have a huge supporting role to play in this win. Alpecin was quick to take the reigns in the hope to win the stage and recover from Saturday’s events, but Bora and the UAE riders were quick to take back the lead and compete on the final kilometer.
Ryan Mullen (Bora Hansgrohe) found himself leading from the front but he quickly became a lone wolf, losing his teammates. He was prompted to pull back, giving UAE a chance to lead. It seemed as if Bennett was out of the game but, just then, Danny van Poppel came into action and launched the winner from the left-hand side of the road. Daniel McLay ( Team Arkéa-Samsic) was leading out front when Sam dashed by him like a gush of wind, leaving the peloton to bite the dust.
Sam Bennette later confirmed that he is back in form and he is back for good, saying:
For it to happen two times in a row is nice. It’s confidence-boosting for sure
But he also acknowledged that he couldn’t have done it without the support of his team:
The boys again… what can I say? Jonas [Koch] was riding all day – a big thank you for the commitment. Then the boys looking after me in the bunch all day. In the final, Jonas, even though he was riding all day, came back and gave a big turn. Then Ryan kept us up there, taking so much wind. Then Danny… it was a masterclass
While Jumbo-Visma still holds the red jersey, with the overall lead being tossed to Edoardo Affini from Mike Teunissen, the general classification remains unchanged. Even though Michael Woods (Israel-Premier Tech) was out with a head impact due to a crash. Richard Carapaz ( INEOS Grenadiers) also fell prey to a crash inside the last 20 km, but he got back on the bike and decided to continue the chase.
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|2||Mads Pedersen||Trek-Segafredo||+ 00|
|3||Daniel McLay||Team Arkéa-Samsic||+ 00|
|4||Bryan Coquard||Cofidis||+ 00|
|5||Fabian Lienhard||Groupama-FDJ||+ 00|
|6||Tim Merlier||Alpecin-Deceuninck||+ 00|
|7||Kaden Groves||Team BikeExchange-Jayco||+ 00|
|8||Cédric Beullens||Lotto Soudal||+ 00|
|9||Pascal Ackermann||UAE Team Emirates||+ 00|
|10||Danny van Poppel||BORA-hansgrohe||+ 00|
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Featured Image Via YouTube/ FloBikes