In the 13km long final climb over the old pass road via La Tremola, the Ineos-Express created the first selection in the peloton. Three teammates set a fierce pace for their leader. At 2.7km from the finish line Bernal took over the command, leaving all his rivals behind.
“I told my teammates to go full gas. They did their job perfectly. I dedicate this victory to them. Without their commitment, this win would not have been possible,” said Bernal.
The winner of this year’s Paris – Nice stage race is well aware that he will lose time over Rohan Dennis on Saturday in the 19.2 km long individual time trial in Obergoms. The question will rather be, how the two riders will have digested the 216.6 kilometres of this week’s longest stage and its exhausting final climb.
After a blistering fast start of the stage, in which 51.9 km were covered in the first hour, a breakaway group of eight riders distanced the peloton. With Michael Albasini (MTS), Swiss Champion Steve Morabito (GFC), Gino Mäder (TDD) and Mathias Frank (ALM), four Swiss cyclists were among the breakaway riders.
At the foot of La Tremola, Frank tried to make up for the defeat of the previous day in Flumserberg by accelerating away. Frank’s dream of winning the stage came to and end 5km before the historical hospice ‘Ospizio San Gottardo’.