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Paris-Nice (6) - Doubey : « Defend this 11th place in GC »

Paris-Nice (6) - Doubey : « Defend this 11th place in GC »

Paris-Nice (2.WT, 8-15/03) won some height this Friday on the occasion of the sixte stage between Sorgues and Apt. This day in the Vaucluse would finally become the penultimate day of the Race to the Sun, because the French authorities and the organisation decided to conclude the eight day race on Saturday evening, after the seventh stage, on top of Valdeblore La Colmiane. The start was very fast, eliminating Tom Devriendt, who abandoned the race. The peloton quickly lost of its members, with only sixty riders approaching the final circuit around Apt, containing three climbs. Tiesj Benoot attacked solo towards the victory, before Xandro Meurisse and Fabien Doubey finished together in 14th and 16th position. The French climber is now 11th in the provisional general classification, one day ahead of the final mountain stage in the surroundings of Nice, between Nice and Valdeblore La Colmiane (166.5km).

Fabien Doubey :

« I'm very happy with my stage. I knew that it would be difficult to follow the best climbers on the final circuit, and I limited the damage. With Xandro, we managed the final well, but Aimé De Gendt and Andrea Pasqualon accomplished fantastic work before. For one moment I tried to follow the big groups, but when I saw Deceuninck-Quick Step controlling, I've chosen to save my energy. In the end it was a good decision, because we raced from A to Z today. »

« In the final I tried to anticipate downhill with Nibali, but without succes. Another mountain stage is awaiting us. I want to defend my 11th place in the general classification. If one would have told me that I would figure in the top 15 of Paris-Nice, I would have signed with both hands. Especially knowing that we added the race last minute to our programme. It will be a finish for pure climbers, but I want to be in the mix with the best and give all I have until the top. » 

Xandro Meurisse :
« I was a bit scared, because the start was very fast and the breakaway wasn't gone on the first climb yet. But in the end, I had a good feeling and I was never in difficulties. I felt better and better. On the last climb I was still hoping for a top 10, but I came a little too short on the mur at the entrance of Apt. But I'm especially happy to have my good feeling back after five difficult days. We have another day with nice goals ahead of us. We'll have to defend the top 15 of Fabien, and why not climb in the top 10. I'll fight until the finish trying to gain some positions in the general classification. » 

Stage 6 :
1. Tiesj Benoot 
2. Michael Matthews
3. Sergio Higuita
14. Xandro Meurisse + 0:43
16. Fabien Doubey
29. Aimé De Gendt + 3:18
50. Andrea Pasqualon + 12:16
94. Pieter Vanspeybrouck + 26:39
96. Boy Van Poppel 
DNF Tom Devriendt

Provisional general classification :
1. Maximilian Schachmann 
2. Tiesj Benoot + 0:36
3. Sergio Higuita + 1:01
11. Fabien Doubey + 2:36
31. Xandro Meurisse + 14:16
32. Aimé De Gendt + 14:38
36. Andrea Pasqualon + 17:31
89. Pieter Vanspeybrouck + 46:17
91. Boy Van Poppel + 52:44