The fifth stage of the 53rd Tirreno-Adriatico was dubbed the ‘the stage of the walls’, with the parcours dotted with short, but steep climbs and Mitchelton-SCOTT went into the stage with a plan to win, a plan they executed perfectly with Adam Yates taking the victory.
After suffering some misfortune on stage two when he got hit from behind when trying to avoid a heavy crash, Yates had been trying to claw back some time on the general classification and today’s stage win sees him back in the top six.
A challenging day unfolded over 178kilometres in Marche and as the race hit the last of the challenging finishing circuits of Filottrano Mitchelton-SCOTT took over with Luke Durbridge and Michael Hepburn leading the charge.
Jack Bauer and South African champion Daryl Impey were lined out behind and as the road inclined for the final time Yates attacked, gaining a gap he held all the way to the line for a memorable victory.
A wet start got underway in Castelraimondo with the peloton heading straight onto a long, fast descent for the first 45killometres. Attacks came thick and fast before the first climb of Montelupone.
A five-man breakaway got the jump on the peloton over the first ten kilometres and quickly gained a six-minute advantage.
The gap fell significantly with around 50kilometres to go after the GPM in Osimo and finally the group were caught on the closing circuits of Filottrano.
Make way for The Mitchelton-SCOTT express:
On the last lap of the race Durbridge and Hepburn blew the front of the peloton apart, heavily reducing the bunch before Bauer and Impey took over to position Yates in a prime spot to attack on the steep final climb.
Accelerating without looking back Yates powered away over the final four-kilometres, creating a gap and holding his rhythm all the way to the line for the win.
Adam Yates – Stage winner:
“I’ve been feeling really good on the climbs, especially the steeper sections and with the situation on the general classification we knew that we needed to race intelligently to get a stage win and try to move back up the overall.”
“The guys were absolutely brilliant today and we went in with a plan that was executed perfectly, they really ramped the pace up on the closing circuit and dropped me off in a great position on the climb.
“All I had to do was attack I’ve been feeling really good and I knew if I could get a gap that I had as good chance of holding it. After starting the race so well and then getting some bad luck it is great that we could turn it around and get the result today.”
Head Sport director Matt White:
“There has been three days in a row that have really suited Adam’s characteristics and today was the last opportunity and we wanted to give him the best chance of making the most of that opportunity. The boys did a very good job of positioning him and his from and legs did the rest.”
“We came into the race wanting to podium and when we lost our chances of that it switched to trying to win a stage and we’ve ticked that box now. Anything we get from general classification is a bonus and with a sprint stage and a time trial to come we’re happy to have got that stage win.”
Tirreno Adriatico: Stage 5 Results:
1. Adam Yates (Mitchelton-SCOTT) 4:16:35
Tirreno Adriatico: General Classification after stage 5:
1. Michal Kwiatowski (Team Sky) 21:31:28