It was a fast and chaotic stage five of the 2019 UAE Tour on Thursday, but Team KATUSHA ALPECIN’s Marcel Kittel stayed the course and produced a strong third place in a bunch sprint.
„I think we did a good job, and that is something we can use as confidence for the final stage on Saturday. We should be happy with the result. To lose against Elia (Viviani) and Fernando (Gaviria), that’s really no shame. We’re on the right direction. But Viviani timed it perfectly. On the line when we passed the finish, I just looked to the right and saw him passing us there. He came in the right moment and used the most slipstream,“ said Marcel Kittel.
Elia Viviani (Deceuninck-Quick-Step) took the win by half a wheel on the line in the finish in Khor Fakkan. The Italian made a late move to pip Fernando Gaviria (UAE Team Emirates) to the line with Kittel and Sam Bennett (Bora-Hansgrohe) also involved in the photo finish.
„I had to start my sprint very early today because I knew if I don’t start there I will be boxed in and then I went up there in the front. Im happy with the feeling, I had good legs today. But in the finale when it’s so fast and everyone is really fresh the most important is the timing. We talked about in the last days as a the team to aim for that to be in the right moment in front,“added Marcel.
The UAE Tour continues on Friday with stage six, a 180km stage to a summit finish at Jebel Jais. On Saturday the UAE Tour’s final showdown is one for the fast wheels finishing in Dubai Citywalk.