Tour de France – stage 4 – Heinrich Haussler «I’m pretty disappointed with this result, but sprinting is still very difficult to get right»

08 July 2014

IAM Cycling

Marcel Kittel has proved himself to be the best sprinter at the 101st Tour de France.  In Lille, the German racing for Giant-Shimano won his third bouquet on the 163 kilometer long fourth stage.  Vincenzo Nibali remained in the yellow jersey ahead of the fifth stage that Tour de France organizers peppered with nine cobbled sections used in the spring classic Paris-Roubaix.

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For IAM Cycling, the stages have unfolded in a similar fashion.  Following his 7th place finish in the center of London, Heinrich Haussler notched up an 11th place behind Kittle, without having been able to profit from the hard work done by Reto Hollenstein, Martin Elmiger and Roger Kluge.

Kluge explained how the stage unfolded for him.  “For once, I did not have a flat or crash, so I managed to help Heino.  Nevertheless, we had a lot of trouble staying together.  And in this discipline, you need a little luck too.”  Haussler explained what happened to him in the final kilometers.

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“We really did everything right.  At the end, I had a great position thanks to the hard work of my teammates.  But there were a lot of turns and roundabouts, and each time I lost positions, and had to fight to get back up.  When we were at the 300 meters to go marker, I was blocked and couldn’t make my final push.  It’s a shame because I was ready to take a chance since I had really good legs today.  I am disappointed, but the sprint is something that is very difficult to get right.”

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With a mini-classic on offer in the Tour de France for Wednesday, Martin Elmiger confirmed that the pack is nervous.

“You really have to be careful in these stages dedicated to sprinters.  Heino is ready to grab a good result, but before you can do that, you have to survive the day.  Rain is expected and it will be war all day tomorrow.  Our goal is to protect Mathias Frank, our leader, but that does not mean that riders like Chavanel and Haussler will not race to win.”