The European Champion was in the mix for our team Monday afternoon.
Fabio Jakobsen finished fourth on the third stage of the race, which brought the peloton on French soil after an unforgettable weekend in the Basque Country. Bayonne – the home town of 1937 Tour de France winner Roger Lapébie – came at the end of a pretty quiet day that took in just a few classified climbs, which inspired only two riders to go in the breakaway.
Soudal Quick-Step was among the teams to show their intentions early, sending Tim Declercq at the front of the bunch to keep the gap in check. Our team continued to be prominent also in the closing kilometers, when Kasper Asgreen and Yves Lampaert stretched out the field as the line was getting closer and closer. In what turned out to be a hectic mass gallop won by Jasper Philipsen (Alpecin-Deceuninck), Fabio Jakobsen came in fourth place, a result he talked about after the stage.
“It’s a pity, as I had the legs, but I was just too far and not in a winning position. I got boxed in a bit on a small uphill and there I lost Michael’s wheel, so next time I have to fight more for that. He waited for me, but then we got boxed in again and I found myself stuck. We both had the legs, but Michael had nowhere to go out. I tried to find my way, but in the end, I concluded in fourth. The finish was a bit tricky, it could have been on a straight line instead. Anyway, we saw a strong team, which is good, and this is very important for the next days”, explained the European Champion after the stage.
Photo credit: ©Tim De Waele / Getty Images