Besseger beats out favorite Ganna’s best team on the UAE Tour, Dumoulin takes third place
Tuesday, February 22, 2022 at 13:30
Not Filippo Gana, but Stefan Bisiger has won the singles time trial on the UAE Tour. The Swiss expert in the time test turned out to be seven seconds faster than the Italian favorite after a round of pool for an hour nine kilometers. Tom Dumoulin took third place well and did the best business for the ratings riders.
On the third day of the UAE Tour, a single experience was scheduled. Tuesday’s stage was a pool-level trial over nine kilometers in Ajman. The course designers designed a very fast track that was only interrupted by a turn in the middle of the course. The roads were quite flat and wide which allowed riders to quietly rest the chainring on a large gear. A perfect turn for Filippo Jana: The world clockwise champion was the favorite to win the stage and grab the leader’s jersey from Jasper Philipsen.
But first it was the turn of Kazakh Artyom Zakharov to set a date. The Team Astana rider Qazaqstan was the first to podium at the start, but Zakharov missed out on the first goal and finished far behind. On the other hand, Mikkel Bjerg managed to complete an excellent time trial. This was not surprising, as the Dane from the United Arab Emirates became the three-time world champion in this discipline. With a time of 10m07, he was allowed to sit in the hot seat, but the real guns still had to start trying their time.
Besiger treats heaven for rare defeat
That was the look forward to Stefan Bissegger’s performance. The Swiss EF Education-EasyPost rider, still only 23, was the best in a race against time last year during the Tour de Paris-Nice and Benelux, and also managed to set a very sharp time today. What is exciting, with the 9m43 he was faster than the Bjerg by no less than 24 seconds, and thus was able to raise a level particularly high for other specialists. Also for the best Ganna favourite, this year is already the best in two time trials, in the Star of Bessèges and the Tour de La Provence. However, the two-time world champion against the clock suffered a rare defeat today.
On the first intermediate point, the difference was minimal, and Ganna had to give up just one second on Beseiger, but the Italian suddenly lost another six seconds in the second part of the time trial. Ganna certainly had nothing to be ashamed of with a 9m50s finish time, but it turns out it wasn’t enough for a stage victory. The only rider who could still see the legs of the Beseiger chair was Tom Dumoulin. Not only has the perfect Jumbo-Visma time trial been offered, but the Dutch reigning champion has also done well in pool-level time trials in the past.
Dumoulin also got off to a good start, clocking a good intermediate time of 4.5km and setting a time of 9m 57sec at the finish. It turns out he was thirteen seconds slower than Bessiger, but he did an excellent job in terms of classification and a potential overall victory. Then it was just a matter of looking forward to the arrival of Commander Philipsen. The strong runner in Alpecin-Fenix had no illusions, although he drove an excellent time trial. With 10m11s, he finished 10th on the day, but had to give up the leader jersey to Beseiger.
Dumoulin does the best business among the ranking knights
If we look at the relationships between the rating knights, we see that Dumoulin does an excellent job. The Limburger managed to spend four seconds on defending champion Tadej Pogačar (10m01s), who can also look back with relief on his time trial. Joao Almeida (10d05s) and Alexander Vlasov (10d08s) managed to reduce damage, as did Adam Yates (10d12s). Guys like Romain Bardet (10d and 29s), Jay Hindley (10d and 35s) and Jan Hurt (10d and 44s), on the other hand, are already looking at a bigger flaw.
Tomorrow the rating will change again, as the riders will then finish climbing Jebel Jais.
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