May 27, 2024

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Lovre kills Merlier in the third sprint of the UAE Tour: Olaf Quigg overtakes the Belgian to the end

Lovre kills Merlier in the third sprint of the UAE Tour: Olaf Quigg overtakes the Belgian to the end

United Arab Emirates tour

09:26 Al-Aqqah13:35 Umm Al Quwain

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    Tim Merlier did not achieve his third victory in the UAE Tour sprint race. Our compatriot had to sprint on an idle wheel in the fifth stage, which prevented Soudal-Quick Stepper from taking full advantage of his opportunities. However, a decision had to be made about the photo finish: Olaf Koeg turned out to be a fraction faster. Sam Welsford came in third. Jay Fine (Team UAE) remains the leader.

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    For the second day in a row, the fasting ones were allowed to fight for the stage win.

    While waiting for the enemy, venture out with Harm Vanhoeke and Lennert Van Eetvelt, two Belgians from Lotto-Destiny, have their chance in today's ride.

    It has become a successful project for the Lotto duo. Van Eetvelt won both medium sprints and thus gained an additional 6 seconds. Thus, he ranks ninth in the general classification.

    With less than 50 kilometers remaining, the nervousness in the peloton increased. The wind was starting to pick up and no one wanted to be caught off guard by a possible propeller strike.

    It was a lot of trouble for nothing. Together the group reached the final straight, and here Olaf Koeg showed himself as the strongest of the day. In a thrilling duel with Tim Merlier, a photo finish was needed to determine the winner.

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    Merlier had to tackle a rider during the race, thus losing his perfect report in the UAE Tour's sprint.

    After Merlier, another Belgian can be found in the top five: Milan Freitein.

    Image finish by Kooij and Merlier.

    Kooij gets the better of Merlier in the end.

    Tim Merlier: “Leakage 6km from the finish”

    “I'm very happy about it. I didn't even know if I had won or not. We had to wait for a final answer,” Quigg tells his story after the match.

    “Everything has to go well to win, and fortunately it happened today.”

    “I was a little ahead of the sprint, but then I managed to join Mark Cavendish on the right side of the road. Fortunately I saw a small gap and was able to pass him.”

    It is already the 30th professional victory for the 22-year-old Dutchman. At the Giro he will be at the start of a Grand Tour for the first time.

    Merlier was disappointed. “Like last year with Ewan, it came to nothing,” although the Belgian succeeded then. “My rear tire eventually flattened, and with 6km to go, I felt the pressure release.”

    “I had to make a decision and I tried to make the best of it. I told my teammates that I would just go for points for the green jersey, but with 200 meters to go, I noticed that I could still win. So I gave it a go.” Total .”

    Stage after stage

    What else happened in the final stage?

    On the right, it is Murcoff who puts Cavendish in front very early. Halfway through the same thing happens to Groves.

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    Kooij was in a better position and used Cavendish as the perfect lead. Merlier was stuck for some time but managed to escape the crowd in Welsford's wake.

    Kooij and Merlier then ride side by side for dozens of metres, with Kooij being the eventual winner.

    idle miller

    Pictures show that Merlier had a puncture at the time of the race. Bad luck prevents him from winning the third stage in a row.

    Koi wins

    Olaf Koeg was declared the winner. After two wins, Merlier has to settle for second place.

    There are congratulations to Quigg, but so far there is no clear picture that provides a definitive answer.

    What is already certain is Welsford's third place finish.

    Photo finish!

    Merlier and Kooij fight until the last metre. An image finish should provide greater clarity.

    Cavendish was brought in.

    Visma has also only arrived now. Is the race timing better than yesterday?

    Merlier moves up

    Soudal – The quick step sees the moment of progressing two kilometers from the finish. Will Merlier be able to get the job done again?

    Cavagna explains why Movistar signed him. The last 3 kilometers start with the Frenchman at the front.

    Bennett is left to fend for himself by his crew. He will soon have to choose his own path.

    The last real turning point is behind us. The road will bend a little after that, but otherwise it will be straight forward.

    The chaos increases

    One train is formed, and the other begins to derail slightly. It's a battle for where you are now.

    Green jacket

    Merlier scored a goal in the green shirt. If he finishes in the top three today, he can wear this on his shoulders tomorrow.

    Snook of Bjerg

    Just over 10km from the finish, Mikkel Berg (UAE) made another attempt. The peloton is drawn briefly on the bar, but nothing more.

    Now Astana is sticking her nose to the window too. Cavendish has yet to appear on the UAE Tour, so could he change that today?

    United Arab Emirates tour