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UCI WorldTour: Degenkolb takes home victory for Germany in Vattenfall Cyclassics




Vattenfall Cyclassics results

UCI WorldTour Rankings


Germany’s John Degenkolb (Argos-Shimano) could not have asked for a better result in his debut participation in his home nation’s biggest one-day Classic, the Vattenfall Cyclassics, as the 24-year-old sprinter roared home to victory ahead of compatriot André Greipel (Lotto-Belisol) and Norway’s Alexandre Kristoff (Katusha).

Last year John Degenkolb did not take part in the Vattenfall Cyclassics, racking up five bunch sprint stages in the Vuelta a España instead. But this time round the German was equally unstoppable in Germany, where he claimed Argos-Shimano’s 19th win of the season and first ever victory in a WorldTour one-day event.

Already the winner of a stage in the Giro d’Italia, Degenkolb’s Argos-Shimano squad suffered a setback when a crash involving team-mate Koen De Kort left the Dutch team a man down. However, the rest of the squad delivered Degenkolb in perfect position for the final bunch sprint, making him the first winner of the German Classic since Erik Zabel in 2001.

“On the run-in the team were great,” Degenkolb said later. “We had to bring back a strong move and then they dropped me off perfectly for the sprint.”

“It was a hectic one as it was quite narrow but that is the perfect sprint for me. If the sprint was after 180km I would be not have been able to win, but after such an exhausting long race I can do this.”

“In the final metres I followed my instinct and went with 220m to go and it was just the right time for me to hold on and beat Greipel.

“This win is a big highlight for me, winning one of the biggest races in my own country means a lot to me.”

The German Classic had very little effect on the overall classification of the UCI WorldTour, with Chris Froome (Sky ProCycling) still leading the individual rankings by a comfortable margin ahead of Peter Sagan (Cannondale Pro Cycling) and Joaquim Rodriguez (Katusha). The first 21 places remained unchanged, although Kristoff moved up from 37th to 22 overall thanks to his third place in the race.

There were few changes, either, in the UCI WorldTour nations ranking, still led by Spain and with no alterations in the top 12 places, although German have gained three spots, moving up from 16th to 13th. Equally, in the teams ranking, led by Sky ProCycling, the only change was for Belgian squad Lotto-Belisol, who have moved up a place to 17th.

Apart from the ongoing Vuelta a España, which finishes on September 15th, the next UCIWorld Tour race will be the GP Ouest France - Plouay one-day Classic, on September 1st.

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