There was another victory salute on the line from Mareczko in Hungary today after a powerful sprint to the finish line in Kazincbarcika saw him secure a hat-trick of stage wins, this time ahead of Emīls Liepiņš (Trek – Segafredo) and David van der Poel (Alpecin – Fenix).
CCC Team took responsibility for the pace-making at the front of the peloton as a five rider breakaway, which was only able to extend a maximum advantage of around three minutes 30 seconds, went clear after an initial 40-kilometer battle.
At the start of the first of two laps of the 37.8-kilometer finishing circuit, which included two short but punchy climbs, the escapees were still holding onto a three-minute advantage but with CCC Team, led by Michał Paluta, continuing to pulling on the front, the gap began to fall quickly.
Eventually, on the final climb, which topped out with around 18 kilometers to go, the race was back together and, despite the best efforts of some teams to try and string out the peloton and force gaps to open up, the stage was soon set for the bunch sprint.
Similarly to stages two and three, Kamil Gradek and Łukasz Wiśniowski guided Mareczko into position, keeping him well-placed and out of trouble at the front of the bunch before the Italian, who remains the leader of the Points Classification after today’s stage win, surged to the line.
The Winner’s Interview with Jakub Mareczko
Congratulations, Jakub. How are you feeling after your third victory in three days?
“I feel amazing. It was another great day for us today and I really have to give a huge thanks to the team. The guys once again did an unbelievable job for me throughout the day and they worked hard to make sure we caught the breakaway and to help set me up for the sprint. In the final, like yesterday and the day before, Gradek and Wiśniowski did a super job and delivered me into the best position for the sprint. All I had to do was finish it off.”
It was a different run into the line with two small climbs on the finishing circuit. Talk us through today’s stage.
“The final kilometers were harder on paper today than on the previous stage with two short climbs on the finish circuits, but I knew I was in good shape so I wasn’t too worried about them. The team made sure I was right at the front of the bunch all day and especially at those crucial moments. This was the final opportunity for the sprinters at this race and so I am really happy to have taken my third victory for the team before we go into the mountains tomorrow and work for Attila Valter.”
Quotes From the Finish Line
Sports Director, Gabriele Missaglia:
“Three wins in three days for Jakub is fantastic. We knew he was in good shape coming into the race and we were aiming to get at least one stage win with Jakub so, now we have exceeded our own expectations. Once again, the whole team did an amazing job today. Michał Paluta has worked hard on the front every day and, on this stage, he was up there pulling until around 20 kilometers to go. Immediately after Kamil Gradek and Łukasz Wiśniowski moved to the front to lead-out Mareczko, while also keeping Attila Valter safe ahead of the GC battle on the climbs tomorrow. It wasn’t an easy finish with the two climbs on the finishing circuit, the first of which was pretty steep, so I am very happy that together we were able to force the bunch sprint and help Jakub take this third victory. I’m really happy for him and the team. Tomorrow, we will be working for Attila Valter and everyone is really motivated to see what we can do especially after Jakub’s stage wins so we will see what happens.”
Tour De Hongrie
Stage 4: Sárospatak > Kazincbarcika (180km)
Top 3: 1. Jakub Mareczko (CCC Team) 2. Emīls Liepiņš (Trek – Segafredo) 3. David van der Poel (Alpecin – Fenix)
CCC Team Top 3: 1. Jakub Mareczko 22. Łukasz Wiśniowski 24. Attila Valter