Durbridge Wins Circuit Cycliste Sarthe-Pays de la Loire 2012

April 6, 2012 Updated: April 8, 2012
Luke Durbridge of GreenEdge, in only his second pro race in Europe, won the GC in the Circuit Cycliste Sarthe. (Bernard Larvol/circuitcycliste.sarthe.com)
Luke Durbridge of GreenEdge, in only his second pro race in Europe, won the GC in the Circuit Cycliste Sarthe. (Bernard Larvol/circuitcycliste.sarthe.com)

GreenEdge rider Luke Durbridge finished close enough to the front in the final sprint of the final stage of Circuit Cycliste Sarthe-Pays de la Loire to win the Generral Classification. Durbridge, who came into the race ahead by eight seconds; he and his team preserved his lead, not letting any of his competitors get an edge.

“The teams of the sprinters had missed the break, so it was just a question of the race to come down to a final bunch sprint,” Durbridge told cyclingnews.com “I was more nervous today. Yesterday I expected to lose the yellow jersey but today I had a chance of winning the race.

“This is only my second race as a pro in Europe I was already happy to finish in the top ten of the Three Days of De Panne. Now this one is a pretty big win.”

Garmin's Thomas Dekker won the sprint and the stage. (Bernard Larvol/circuitcycliste.sarthe.com)
Garmin's Thomas Dekker won the sprint and the stage. (Bernard Larvol/circuitcycliste.sarthe.com)

Garmin-Barracuda’s Thomas Dekker won the final sprint to take the stage victory.

“”Normally I’m not a sprinter,” Dekker told cyclingnews.com. “A few riders attacked before the final sprint. I went with them. With 500 meters to go, I watched behind and saw a gap, so I fought till the finishing line. It was an intense effort of 1100 meters. It’s a good feeling to be a winner again. I’m really happy.”

The final stage, 166.6 km from Le Mans to Sablé-sur-Sarthe, included a single climb and eight 12.2-km laps around the city.—not a stage for a breakaway, but of course riders tried.

Sixteen riders escaped in the first 1 kilometer—Pierrick Fedrigo (FDJ,) Ben Hermans (RadioShack,) Jonathan Castroviejo (Movistar,) Pieter Weening (GreenEdge,) Maxim Belkov (Katusha,) Raymond Kreder and Andrew Talansky (Garmin,) Johannes Fröhlinger (Argos-Shimano), Jimmy Engoulvent (Saur-Sojasun), Rafaa Chtioui (Europcar,) Rémi Cusin (Type 1 Sanofi,) Romain Zingle (Cofidis,) Nicolas Edet (Cofidis,) Geoffroy Lequatre (Brittany Schuller,) Mathieu Drujon (Auber 93,) Benoit Jarrier (Veranda Rideau Super U.)

This group had a hard time gaining ground; their largest gap was under a minute, probably because Pierrick Fedrigo (FDJ) was a General Classification contender; no one wanted to see him get away and steal the race.

After 85 km, the first rider dropped out: Pieter Weening fell back into the clutches of the peloton; to be followed over the next several kilometers buy most of his fellow escapees. Only Andrew Talansky and Romain Zingle pressed on for another couple of kilometers before being swept up by the peloton.

The peloton only stayed together for five kilometers before a group of twelve attacked off the front—Arnaud Gerard (FDJ,) George Bennett (Radioshack,) Vladimir Karpets (Movistar,) Daniel Teklehaimanot (GreenEdge,) Pavel Brutt (Katusha,) Thomas Damuseau (Argos-Shimano), Anthony Delaplace (Saur-Sojasun,) Matteo Pelucchi (Europcar,) Sébastien Duret (Brittany Schuller,) Nicolas Rousseau (Auber 93,) plus Raymond Kreder and Jimmy Engoulvent from the first break, got away at the 100-km mark.

Cofidis and GreenEdge pushed the pace in the peloton; Anthony Delaplace was fifth overall, too great a threat to let escape. The peloton kept the gap around 30 seconds until, with 25 km to go, four riders decided to try on their own: Pavel Brutt and J. Engoulvent attacked first, followed by Raymond Kreder and Sébastien Duret.

Brut and Engoulvent went first. Kreder caught up in about five km; Duret needed another five km to bridge. By the time he caught the three leaders, the rest of the break had been reabsorbed.

RadioShack’s Andy Schleck led the chase; five km after joining the leaders, Duret dropped back, as did Engioulvent and Kreder. Pavel Brut persisted but by kilometer 163 he was done. Almost immediately Brice Feillu of Sojasun Saur and race leader Luke Durbridge attacked, but they were caught within 2500 meters, setting up a sprint finish.

Thomas Dekker won the stage; Durbridge won the General Classification.

Circuit Cycliste Sarthe Stage Five

 

 

Rider

Team

Time

 

1

Thomas Dekker

Garmin-Barracuda

3:41:29

 

2

Nacer Bouhanni

FDJ Big-Mat

+0

 

3

Sacha Modolo

Colnago-CSF

+0

 

4

Daniele Colli

Team Type 1-Sanofi

+0

 

5

Jules Justin

Veranda Rideau

+0

 

6

Samuel Dumoulin

Cofidis

+0

 

7

Florian Vachon

Brittany Schuller

+0

 

8

Steven Caethoven

Accent Jobs

+0

 

9

Sonny Colbrelli

Colnago-CSF

+0

 

10

Julien El Fares

Team Type 1-Sanofi

+0

 

Circuit Cycliste Sarthe-Pays de la Loire 2012

 

Rider

Team

Time

1

Luke Durbridge

GreenEdge

15:33:29

2

Manuele Boaro

Saxo Bank

0: 0: 8

3

Nelson Oliveira

Radioshack-Nissan

0: 0: 8

4

Anthony Delaplace

Saur-Sojasun

0: 0: 9

5

Thomas Dekker

Garmin-Barracuda

0: 0:12

6

Jan Bakelants

RadioShack-Nissan

0: 0:12

7

Francisco Ventoso

Movistar

0: 0:12

8

Alexander Geniez

Argos-Shimano

0: 0:14

9

Pierrick Fedrigo

FDJ Big-Mat

0: 0:14

10

Ruben Plaza

Movistar

0: 0:15