Gianni Moscon (Team Sky) won the 3rd and Queen stage of the Arctic Race of Norway by out climbing Stef Clement (IAM Cycling) and Oscar Gatto (Tinkoff) on the summit finish to Korgfjellet. By winning the stage, Moscon also went into the overall race lead with just tomorrow’s final stage to go.
The 160km stage from Nesna to Korgfjellet would be the queen stage as the stage ended with an 8.9km climb to the line. Matt Brammeier was again in the thick of the action at the Arctic Race of Norway as he made the 4-rider break on today’s 3rd stage. Brammeier and co. were not allowed much breathing space though as Team Sky and Katusha never let the gap grow any larger than 2’30”.
With such a small gap and a big climb looming to finish off the stage, it was inevitable that our Irishman and his fellow breakaway mates would be caught. The quartet did well to push the peloton all the way to the foot of the final climb but the showdown on the category 1 Korgfjellet was not going to be stolen from the GC contenders today.
Team Dimension Data for Qhubeka did not have a specialist for today’s type of finish but our South African, Johann van Zyl who has just returned to racing after recovering from a broken elbow, gave the climb a good go to see where his form is at. Van Zyl, Youcef Reguigui and Songezo Jim all did well to hang on to the main contenders until 4km to go, but when the big attacks came from the climbers our trio was distanced. Van Zyl was our best placed on the stage, 2’08” down on Moscon.
Roger Hammond – Sport Director
Today was really tough, up and down all day with a nasty climb at the end. The rain and cold weather exaggerated those difficulties. Even so, Matt rode aggressively being part of the 4-man group ahead of the race. On the final climb, Johann in his first race back from injury, fought hard but he still needs a few more race days under his belt.