The breakaway proved too good on stage five of the Volta Catalunya as Jarlinson Pantano (Trek-Segafredo) took victory ahead of Vegard Stake Laengen (UAE-Team Emirates) and Matej Mohoric (Bahrain-Merida) prevailed at the finish in Vielha Val d’Aran.
Merhawi Kudus was our best rider on the day as he finished in the group 14 seconds off the lead and in 21st position overall.
The day started with an early breakaway of 15 riders that was slowly whittled down as the race reached the latter half.
With 75km to go the gap held steady at just over 4 minutes which the group of Wyss, Pantano, Didier, Bidard, Laengen, Monfort, Visconti, Chernetski, Simon and Bol maintained to within 30km of the finish.
At that point it started to splinter with Pantano and Laengen taking control, managing to repel a number of threats from the chasing groups to duel each other for line honours, with the Colombian finally prevailing.
Ben O’Connor remains our best performing rider in the GC as he’s in 15th place with Louis Meintjes up one place into 25th. Alejandro Valverde holds the overall race leader’s yellow jersey.
Alex Sans Vega – Sports Director
We had our 5 remaining guys in the race ending up in the main bunch, it was not an easy day, a long day. 210km with two long categorised climbs plus another one which wasn’t categorised.
At the end it was good because we maintained our position in the GC for Ben O’Connor and Louis Meintjes. We missed the break which was a shame and we thought it would all come together for the finish but Pantano won the stage from the breakaway.
At least the five guys remain the main bunch and we’re safe. Now we can look forward to the next few days, and tomorrow again for a breakaway and we hope that we don’t miss it.