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Last evening , when the riders were about to take...

Israel Cycling Academy, le texte de sa publication du 15-06-2019 19:08:17 :
Last evening , when the riders were about to take their recovering massage to prepare for the crucial Queen stage today , we approached Krists Neilands.

So what are you thinking about tomorrow, we asked. You got a min gap. You really do not have to win the stage.

“Actually “ he said. “ I will try to win it if I got the chance”.

The next morning, our team director asked us not to upload the interview. . He did not want to tip the other directors in the race. And anyway , we really did not have to win it.

But Krists is the furthest of being arrogant. He is quite a reserve and humble person. But it’s always a mistake to underestimate his resolve. ( remember how he came back from a illness in the Giro d'Italia ti fight for a victory? )

Fast forward to the race. The beginning saw all teams trying to put the pressure on us. And we reacted. All of our riders chased all dangerously potential breakaway. “They were amazing” marveled Krists later.

After more then an hour of trying, the peloton Gave up. 3 not threatening riders were allowed to go but we all knew that the final assault will arrive much later in that last climb. 16 km with the final 3 km rather steep.

We dictated a high pace from the beginning to control a bit the coming attacks. But eventually it was up to
Krists to defend the last km’s by his own.

He just needed to make sure nobody will distance him. A win? Not important.

But he never thought that way. “ I just kept my tempo and waited for them to attack. Then came the last rival . I knew he will attack and waited for him to move. When I saw he is done, I took him on and went for the finish. He could not react. I got it. We all got it. What an amazing team we are “.

Tomorrow , the last flat stage arrive. We will just have to make sure to finish off the job. With the 1:22 min cushion we have, it should be fine.

Pictures: Noa Arnon

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