Simon Yates won the final stage of the AlUla Tour on Saturday afternoon. The Briton won after a sprint from an elite group ahead of Finn-Fisher-Black and William Junior Lecerf, who made a big impression uphill. Yates also won the overall victory with a three-second lead over Lecerf, who automatically became the best youngster due to his second place.
Marnix Taes and Hugo Coorevits
Today at 2:52 PM
The terrible climb to the Skyviews of Harrat Uwayrid would in any case be the executioner of the fifteenth and final stage. The climb of almost three kilometers at twelve percent average was therefore something for climbers such as Simon Yates or the young Belgian William Junior Lecerf.
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At twelve kilometers from the finish the riders started the steep thing. The escapees had caught up, in the platoon it was Jayco-AlUla, which took over command in the service of Yates. The group was thinned out to about ten riders. Among them only top players such as Yates, Davide Formolo, Finn Fisher-Black, Rafal Majka, Matteo Sobrero and Lecerf. It didn’t go fast enough for the young Belgian and a good kilometer before the top the 21-year-old Belgian even made an attack. Lecerf quickly danced up and took a fifteen-second lead. However, Yates realized the danger and followed the Belgian with Fisher-Black in his wake. However, the Kiwi quickly caught Lecerf and rounded the top first with a dying Lecerf in the wheel.
However, Yates and Majka were not far away and came back to the Soudal-Quick Step rider and the New Zealander, who at that moment virtually took the overall victory. Together they had to sail through another ten flat kilometers to the finish with a twenty-second lead over Formolo, Anders Halland Johannessen, Gianluca Brambilla and Sobrero. Pierre Latour also joined his wagon, but the stage victory was up to the four at the front.
Lecerf took his place at the back of the group, Majka rode her heart out for Fisher-Black. In the sprint he eventually lost out to Yates and banged on his handlebars in disappointment. “It’s really stupid,” Lecerf said in an initial response. “I got trapped and should have left earlier. I’m really disappointed, because I had the legs to win. A missed opportunity, because I could and should have attacked. I could really keep going on that climb and eventually Majka took the sprint ahead of Fisher-Black. At the same time, I am also satisfied.”
Lecerf finished second on the final podium, not bad for this neo-pro. At the same time he also won the white jersey for best young person. Soudal – Quick-Step goes home with two jerseys. Tim Merlier won the red points jersey.