Sixth consecutive top-10 as Krists Neilands finishes strong on uphill sprint
The sixth stage in Paris-Nice favored the punchers. A short final climb proved especially interesting for Israel Start-Up Nation’s Krists Neilands.
“The whole team was riding very well today,” Neilands said after finishing tenth. “They supported me the whole day, until the very last moments in the final.”
The former winner of the Tour of Hungary, who has been with the team since 2017, did not have to spend a lot of energy throughout the day. The Latvian, who worked his ass off over the last few days for ISN’s sprinters, got full support from his teammates in this 201-kilometer-long stage.
That was to the liking of Sport Director Lionel Marie. He was satisfied with the stage, after seeing that the ISN riders had been helping the team leader for a long time.
“Everyone worked hard for Krists, getting bottles for him on the climbs, and keeping him out of the wind till far into the final. There was great team spirit,” he concluded from the first team car where he was analyzing the race.
With a longer climb halfway into the race and a drag towards the finish line, it was clear that Krists Neilands would be Israel Start-Up Nation’s man to watch. He survived the climbs with ease and positioned himself well for the final push.
“At the end I was in a good position for the sprint, but with 500 meters to go things got a bit messy. I got stuck and lost a few positions. In the end, I did not have the best place to launch my sprint.”
“I am happy with how we rode as a team today”, Neilands continued. “It was a great effort by everyone: staff and riders.”
Photos: Noa Arnon and Bettini Photo
#YallaISN #BlueAndWhite #ParisNice