UAE Team Emirates rider Diego Ulissi is victorious at the Tour of Turkey World Tour stage race. The Italian secured overall victory in Istanbul despite finishing sixth on the sixth stage of the tour.
Final general classification saw Jesper Hansen of Astana come in second at 12 seconds, with Fausto Masnada of Androni – Sidermec – Bottecchia a mere 24 seconds from the top.
The final stage – a 143km through the scenic streets of the imperial city of Istanbul spanning two continents started in Asia and concluded in Europe.
Istanbul, although not the nation’s capital is in fact Turkey’s economic, cultural, and historic hub. Often referred to as a Eurasian metropolis, it is the only city that’s stretches through two continents divided by the Bosphorus strait. The mega-metropolis has an official population of approximately 15 million, making it the 7th-largest city in the world and by far the largest in Europe. This magnificent metropole was known throughout history as Constantinople, while it served as imperial capital for the Byzantium Empire and later named Istanbul with the Ottoman conquest led by Fatih Sultan Mehmet in 1453, – also known as Mehmet The Conquer. The city gave up its capital status with founding of the Turkish Republic in 1923.
Mustafa Kemal Ataturk, the man who built a nation from the ashes of a fallen empire named the land locked city of Ankara as the new capital of the republic. Today Istanbul is among the most popular destinations in the world attracting particular attention from GCC travelers as well as from all around the globe.
Turkish rider Muhammet Atalay of the Turkish National Team along with Patryk Stosz of CCC Sprandi Polkowice, Thomas Deruette of WB Veranclassic and Paolo Simion of Bardiani CSF bridged a lead of 1:45 until an unfortunate crash resulting in a dozen riders to lose place. As with the fourth stage, UAE Team Emirates did well to protect Ulissi who was up front with Theuns and one of the race favourite Bennett. Ulissi was wise to preserve his energy holding back form the fight and refraining form the aggressive attacks in the climb.
Ulissi was quoted saying,
“I came to Turkey with the intention to win the general classification. It was a challenging goal, but my teammates and I have been impeccable all week, a magnificent week,”
“The finale was the crucial moment of the stage, we did a good job avoiding all risks. I preferred to use some energy to stay out front rather than run any risk. I thank the entire team and our sponsors, I’ve closed out the season in the best way possible.”
This is Ulissi’s second WorldTour win of the season, having already won the Grand Prix Cycliste de Montréal in September.
|Final general classification (first 5)|
|#||Rider Name (Country) Team||Result|
|1||Diego Ulissi (Ita) UAE Team Emirates||26:32:13|
|2||Jesper Hansen (Den) Astana Pro Team||0:00:12|
|3||Fausto Masnada (Ita) Androni – Sidermec – Bottecchia||0:00:24|
|4||Daniel Felipe Martinez Poveda (Col) Wilier Triestina – Selle Italia||0:00:29|
|5||Ildar Arslanov (Rus) Gazprom – Rusvelo||0:00:30|
By: Alp Sarper