Windy conditions neutralised 2nd stage on Tour of Croatia
Wednesday, 18th April – Today’s ending of the race wasn’t as good as yesterday’s for Team Bahrain Merida, but this was expected due to very heavy wind that had a crucial impact on the race.
Because of a very strong wind “bora” in Velebit, the organizers had to neutralize the race, which means that the riders had to ride slow more than 30 km and stopped 3 times – 50 km, 42 km and 32,5 km to go when the race finally continued and one rider got 2 min advantage with the strong back wind.
In the last lap iz beautiful old city Zadar, Mohorič was in the front position but unfortunately he didn’t manage to keep this position. Bonifazio had a mild crash with another rider 1 km to go and he fell but he finished the race anyway and will be able to continue normally tomorrow.
“Race would finish much different if it was not neutralized but the weather conditions were really bad and it was impossible that riders would take a normal downhill,” shortly commented sports director Gorazd Štangelj.
Matej Mohorič who got the chance to surprise sprinters, added: “Neutralizing the race has a great impact on all the riders specially when they literally stop the race. Me, personally, I don’t like it at all but those are the rules. Before neutralising the race, our team made an attack and we got the planned advantage to climb between the fastest the hill and later on downhill. But we had to ride all together slowly after the organizers car all the way to 32 km to go. In the final lap we were finally able to pick up our team strategy but it didn’t end as we wanted. I have lost first position 1km to go and Niccolò was in the fence at the corner. Luckily he is fine and he ended the race today.”
Photo Credits: KL-Photo