A testing and hilly parcours awaited the peloton at Rund um Köln today. Albeit with a flatter finale, several teams lined up aiming for a bunch sprint finish but Team DSM had a different idea. A breakaway escaped early into the day and built up an advantage of around two minutes but approaching the first classified climb after 40 kilometres, the team came forward en masse and putting in a stinging acceleration that split the race to pieces.
Nikias Arndt, Pavel Bittner, Casper Pedersen and Max Poole all made it into the front group of around 30 riders and alongside other teams, put the hammer down to make sure the rest of the bunch didn’t return. From there things settled but approaching the final 50 kilometres the attacks started in the group, with Arndt escaping alongside a duo from Bora. They worked well together and built up a large gap over the chasing group where Pedersen and Bittner did well to demoralise and disrupt the chase.
Heading into the finale the two teammates used their numbers and kept attacking Arndt who responded to as many moves as possible but eventually he could no longer follow the repeated attacks, with the duo escaping. Nonetheless, Arndt pushed all the way to the line to take a hard-fought third place while in the chasing group Pedersen set up Bittner who sprinted to ninth – making for a well-deserved double top ten for the team.
|1||POLITT Nils||BORA - hansgrohe||4:28:21||125|
|2||VAN POPPEL Danny||BORA - hansgrohe||0:13||85|
|3||ARNDT Nikias||Team DSM||0:18||70|
|9||BITTNER Pavel||Team DSM||0:48||25|
|12||PEDERSEN Casper||Team DSM||0:51||10|
|81||POOLE Max||Team DSM||19:17||-|
|1005||MAYRHOFER Marius||Team DSM||-04:28:21||-|
|1006||NIEUWENHUIS Joris||Team DSM||,,||-|