Wout Poels (Team Sky) won the stage 6 hilltop finish at the Tour of Britain today with Rohann Dennis (BMC Racing) and Tom Dumoulin (Giant-Alpecin) rounding out the podium. By finishing in 8th on the stage though, Steve Cummings moved into the yellow jersey and overall lead of the Tour of Britain.
As has been the case with most stages thus far at the Tour of Britain, an early break was able to ride clear in the opening kilometers and today’s break would comprise of 4 riders. Although the stage was only 150km in length, the difficult final which came in the form of the 6km climb to Haytor, Dartmoor meant the GC riders would be on full alert today.
Team Dimension Data for Qhubeka were riding to deliver Steve Cummings to the final climb in good shape and then it would be up to the British powerhouse to fend for himself on the climb. As our African Team controlled the front of the race with Etixx-Quickstep, the break would falter after they began to attack one another. With 10km to go, the race was all together and a showdown would take place on the final climb.
Dennis, Dumoulin and Poels would put in early attacks on the climb but Cummings remained patient as Tony Martin set the pace in the yellow jersey group. As the race leader Julien Vermote came into difficulty with 3km to go, Cummings took this as his queue to jump across to the lead group. A number of riders soon followed to create a general regrouping at the head of affairs. Dennis tried another attack but is was Poels counter attack with 1.5km to go which would make the difference.
Cummings went into time trial mode over the final kilometers to try and limit his losses to the accelerations being made and this saw “Stevo” coming across the line in 8th place on the stage, just 21″ behind Poels. This solid effort by Cummings saw him move into the overall race lead by 49 seconds over Dumoulin with Dennis in third at 51 seconds.
Steve Cummings – Rider
The team did a great job again, like they have done all week. The final was really hard with a headwind and there wasn’t much help but I managed to limit my losses and stuck to the plan. There are still a few more days to go so we just got to keep on fighting and sticking to it until the end.