The 138-kilometer stage featured more than 3000 meters of climbing with the Hors Cateogorie Doplavoro climb halfway through the stage before the 14-kilometer category one climb to the finish line in Platak.
11 riders formed the day’s breakaway but the peloton, controlled largely by Laurens ten Dam, limited the gap to less than three minutes and made the catch on the early slopes of the HC climb.
Riccardo Zoidl launched a solo attack on the climb and crested the summit solo with a 25-second advantage before being caught on the descent and after another reshuffle at the front of the race, three riders led the race on the run into the final climb.
Joey Rosskopf led the chase from behind, joined by Serge Pauwels, Zoidl, and de la Parte in the reduced bunch, 24 seconds behind the leading trio.
Pauwels was quick to respond to an attack by Pierre Rolland (Vital Concept – B&B Hotels) on the early slopes of the climb with 10-kilometers to go and once caught, Zoidl tried his luck with another attack as the race approached the final five kilometers.
Adam Yates (Mitchelton-SCOTT) made what would be the winning move inside five kilometers to go, by which stage de la Parte was in a select chase group of just six riders, 20 seconds behind.
The Spaniard continued to climb at his own pace in the chase group and sprinted to third place, ten seconds behind stage winner Yates, which sees him move up to third place on the General Classification, 17 seconds behind Yates ahead of the final stage.
Quotes from the Finish Line
Víctor de la Parte:
“At the start of the stage, I had a bit of pain in my legs but that got better and better throughout the stage and once we started climbing, I felt good. The team planned our strategy for today’s stage really well and we did a good job all day. We started pulling from the start as we knew we had the strongest team for today’s stage. Everyone knew their role and we started well with Laurens ten Dam setting a good pace. On the first big climb, we had six riders in the front and then on the approach to the final climb, Joey Rosskopf was pulling really hard.”
“We played everything for the last five kilometers. Yates attacked and he just had that little bit more than the rest of us and was able to finish ten seconds in front. Mitchelton-SCOTT will have to control tomorrow and we also have a good team to defend my third position overall. It’s really important for the team to have someone on the podium so I hope to be up there tomorrow too. ”
Fabio Baldato, Sports Director:
“The guys did an amazing job today. 11 riders went in the breakaway, none of whom were dangerous for the GC. We put Laurens ten Dam on the front to start pulling and he did a great job, already dropping some riders and setting a fast pace. We wanted to make the middle climb hard because we knew we didn’t have punchy guys for the final climb. Riccardo did a great move, reaching the summit alone before being caught on the descent. We put Joey on the front of the group to pull before we reached the final climb and then Serge also attacked, which forced Mitchelton-SCOTT to start chasing. It may be a smaller race but with riders like Yates and Villella here, the level is still high and Víctor showed he is strong and has good legs. We will definitely be racing to defend our podium place tomorrow. I’m happy with the racing I have seen and all of the riders are motivated to finish the race well tomorrow and get ready for the Italian races, which was also one of our objectives lining up here, to get in shape for Il Lombardia.”
Stage 5 Rabac > Platak (137km)
Top 3: 1. Adam Yates (Mitchelton-SCOTT), 2. Davide Villella (Astana Pro Team), 3. Víctor de la Parte (CCC Team)
CCC Team top 3: 3. Víctor de la Parte, 14. Riccardo Zoidl, 17. Serge Pauwels