With the stage presenting another opportunity for a breakaway to succeed, it was important to have a CCC Team rider in the front with Josef Černý making the cut.
Černý was attentive early on and pulled away at the right moment, going clear with two other attackers, before two more riders bridged across a few minutes later to complete the five-man breakaway.
The peloton didn’t want to give the leaders too much space and after gaining 2’30” on the chasing bunch, the gap was brought down to 1’15” with 85 kilometers remaining.
On the category three climb to Coll d’Alforja, the breakaway picked up the pace, increasing their lead back to over two minutes, but it was not enough to survive until the finish line.
The Czech rider and the rest of his group were reeled in with 12 kilometers to go and the stage came down to a fast bunch sprint.
The peloton entered the final kilometer of the stage stretched out in one long line with Bevin sitting in fifth place, the perfect position to launch his sprint from.
The New Zealander went first, on the right side of the road, with Michael Matthews (Team Sunweb) and Phil Bauhaus (Bahrain Merida) on his wheel.
Bevin wasn’t able to hold the duo off, with Matthews taking the win, and eventually settled for fourth place.
Quotes from the Finish Line:
„Today I’ve learned how hard it is to sprint with six days of Volta a Catalunya in the legs. In the end I tried to go long as there was a real mix of riders in the top positions, because of the hard run to the line. Unfortunately, all the riders with sprinting abilities were right where they needed to be. I feel that I keep improving, but we are running out of stages, so we will have to ramp it up tomorrow and do our best to get a nice result”
„It was a new day so, a new opportunity. At the beginning we had a nice tailwind so the pace was quite strong. However, in the second part of the stage the wind turned around and that didn’t play in our favor. With every day I feel better and better and today’s stage will not stop me from trying again. One day that breakaway will stay clear until the end and I need make sure I’m in it.”
Volta a Catalunya
Stage 6: Valls>Vila-Seca (174,3km)
Top 3: 1. Michael Matthews (Team Sunweb) 2. Phil Bauhaus (Bahrain Merida) 3. Daryl Impey (Mitchelton-SCOTT)
CCC Team top 3: 4. Patrick Bevin 55. Simon Geschke 59. Łukasz Owsian