The depleted Team Sunweb line-up in France endured another tough stage at the Critérium du Dauphiné today on the short but testing stage 6 with a mountain top finish.
As is the theme at this week’s race, a fast start with a battle for the day’s breakaway saw a large group of 27 riders go clear, with the Team Sunweb guys focusing on getting through the stage ahead of tomorrow’s final test, riding in the peloton.
Martijn Tusveld unfortunately abandoned during the stage, while Mike Teunissen came home in 68th place, behind the GC battle that unfolded at the front of the race on the final climb to the line in La Rosière, before Phil Bauhaus also made it home safely within the time limit.
After the stage, Team Sunweb coach Aike Visbeek said: “For today’s mountain stage, the plan was to survive to the finish. Martijn had not recovered and we decided to let him quit the race as he was empty. Mike did a good race and could follow the main peloton for the majority of the race. Phil was dropped pretty early with the sprinters, but we made the plan to not blow on the first climb. He made it over the second HC climb and maintained a good speed to fight his way back to the Gruppetto and finish safely on a short but very hard stage.”