Brand shines in the breakaway of the day at Tour du Limousin opener
19 August 2020
Race: Tour du Limousin-Nouvelle-Aquitaine, Stage 1
Date: 18th August 2020
Start/Finish: Couzeix – Évaux-les-bains
Distance: 183.5 kilometers
Limoges, France – Today saw the debut of the Team Novo Nordisk at the 53rd edition of the Tour du Limousin-Nouvelle-Aquitaine (2.1) with Sam Brand showing the Changing Diabetes jersey in the breakaway of the day and getting the 19KM Sprint Trophy.
The opening stage ran over 183.5 km between Couzeix and Évaux-les-bains with three cathegorized climbs and a 1.9km, 6.3 per cent ramp at the end in Évaux-les-bains waiting for the 140 riders.
It was a fast and nervous start, with many attacks, until Brand escaped at the head of the race together with three other riders (Euskaltel-Euskadi, Vini Zabu-KTM, Tony Hurel).
After 15km of racing the four-men breakaway was at 3:20 from the peloton and at KM19 Brand went for the 19KM Sprint Trophy.
The breakaway reached a maximum advantage of five minutes after two hours of racing, but it was caught by the peloton at km 102, right before the intermediate sprint point.
The stage ended with Luca Wackermann (Vini Zabu-KTM) attacking on the hilltop finale and getting the first place. Charles Planet was our first rider over the line at the finish just a few seconds behind the leaders ending the race with the 32nd place.
SAM BRAND (GBR-ISLE OF MAN)
Today was a tough stage. It is a short season, where there are not as many opportunities and the team plan was to be aggressive and look after Andrea and Charles.
I was in a good position at the start of the race and decided to go in the breakaway for the team. I felt good and I wanted to go for a jersey, but the group back started to attack earlier than expected; they wanted to get us back before the intermediate sprint and they did.
I did win the sprint of the day and made it to the podium, so really happy about that and ready for stage 2 tomorrow.
PAVEL CHERKASOV, DS
Today the course had narrow streets with continued up and downs. All our guys were really motivated and active right from the beginning.
The goal at the end was to help Charles to get the best position. Andrea and Peter helped him until the last lap. Charles was able to stay with the first bunch until 2km and finished just behind them.
It was a good aggressive day for us.
The second stage takes place on Wednesday August 19, 2020 in the Dordogne between the Departmental Base of Rouffiac and the Grand Étang de Saint-Estèphe, for a total distance of 173.9 kilometers.
Photo Credit ©Rene’ Vigneron