Team Sunweb’s German Grand Tour debutant Phil Bauhaus showed his strength in Messina today, as he sprinted to the line in 5th place at stage 5 of the Giro d’Italia.
The peloton rolled out for stage 5 of the Giro d’Italia in Pedara, at the foot of Mount Etna for another day of nervous racing. The day totalled 159 kilometres and was set to be one for the sprinters, providing they could make it across the days early climbs before the finishing circuit around Messina.
Whilst two riders formed the days breakaway, Team Sunweb rode safe in the bunch with the main focus of delivering Tom Dumoulin safe to the finish. As the race approached it’s finishing circuits in Messina the break was swept up by the relentless chasing bunch with both Tom and Phil in prime positions. As team’s lead-out trains formed the stripes of Team Sunweb could be seen at the front of the expeditious peloton with Phil keen to take a solid result on one of the sprinter-friendly stages of his first Grand Tour. Tom finished safe inside the first bunch moving up a place to 6th in the GC and Phil’s sprint efforts brought him to the finish line in 5th place.
After the race Phil said: “It was a really tough day, I was a little bit unlucky in the beginning and punctured almost straight away and it cost me some energy to come back from that. Then with 50 kilometres to go I had to change my bike which also wasn’t great, but Simon helped me and could position both me and Tom well. In the final I was sprinting for third place, then I was blocked a little bit and couldn’t move back up. After a pretty tough day with some bad luck I am pleased with that result.”
Team Sunweb coach Aike Visbeek explained: “Today was a nervous stage as we expected. Our first focus was to bring Tom safe to the finish. He was feeling good and the team protected him well throughout the day. The team did a good job to bring him in good position into the last kilometre. Phil was up there in the end too, and was really close, he did a good sprint taking 5th. Again today was another good day with good teamwork and we have a nervous day behind us.”