Tour of Oman – stage 6 – Matthias Brändle «It’s always a great feeling to raise your arms on the line»

22 February 2015

IAM Cycling

Tour of Oman 2015

Matthias Brändle has a great affection for, and knowledge of, the hour record and on-the-road breakaways.  One might say he is passionate about them.  On the last stage of the Tour of Oman, the 25 year old Austrian broke out to remind everyone of his escaping acumen.  The IAM Cycling rider attacked his three breakaway companions three kilometers from the finish to win solo and deliver the fourth victory of the season to his team.  In all the stage excitement, the general classification remained the same with Rafael Valls (Lampre Merida) hanging on to take the overall victory.

Tour of Oman 2015

Brändle already tested himself in the time trial at the Tour of Qatar before delving into the twelve days of racing.  Sixth behind a slew of big engines at that race (including Wiggins, Cancellara and Terpstra), the Austrian was still able to earn his own well-deserved bouquet.

Tour of Oman 2015

In his last four attempts to win from a breakaway, Brändle, the recent and former hour record holder, only missed out on the win at Lombardy. 

After the awards ceremony and doping control, the day’s winner was able to take the time to savor his triumph. 

“It’s always a great feeling to be able to raise your arms on the line in victory.  I had staked everything on the final and I remained quiet on the final climb with 25 kilometers to go since I could see the guys were still pushing the pedals.  With three kilometers to go, I started to give it my all.  Today it worked well and all the guys in the break rode equally hard to make the difference.  Personally, I wanted to get a stage victory either at Qatar or Oman, so I just managed to reach my goal on the final day.  I felt good and I hope it will last the rest of my program which includes Omloop Het Nieuwsblad and Tirreno-Adriatico.”

Eddy Seigneur, the directeur sportif for the team, was charged with describing the merits of his rider, someone with whom he has spent the last 15 days. 

“Today, we planned that Marcel Aregger, Reto Hollenstein and Martin Elmiger in addition to Matthias would try for the break.  We knew that the wind would be favorable after 20 kilometers.  The guys proved themselves to be attentive, and Matthias, on the second attempt, was able to find the right breakaway group.   The escapees together were able to take a 10 minute lead, which meant that they were able to play with the pack over the two climbs of the day.  With three kilometers to go to the finish, Matthias went, and in the end was very strong, though he was only 20 meters ahead at the flamme rouge.  This was a great reward for him as well as the team, which has been supportive all week.  The spirit is incredible.  I am very happy to have directed them all this week, and Matthias’ victory is simply the cherry on the top of the birthday cake, a sort of present for our incomparable boss, Michel Thétaz.”

Tour of Oman 2015