Magnier - Lamperti, young wolves take over
February 12 th 2024 - 12:23 [GMT + 4]
Paul Magnier and Luke Lamperti stormed the Tour of Oman as Soudal Quick-Step’s young power duo dominated the uphill finish of stage 3, in Al Bustan. The young French sprinter (19 years old) made the most of his punch to claim his second professional already… And his young American teammate (21) came 2nd and claimed the red leader jersey from the barely older Finn Fisher-Black (UAE Team Emirates, 22). Magnier and Lamperti were teammates last year in the UCI Continental Team Trinity Racing… Their association already makes wonders among the professionals! The stage, initially set to head to Eastern Mountain, was adapted due to the exceptional weather conditions in the Sultanate of Oman.
On the day after Qurayyat’s storm, the sun warms the riders as they get ready to start from Naseem Garden, after the route of stage 3 was adapted to take into account the exceptional weather conditions in the Sultanate of Oman. Indeed, dark clouds are already looming on the horizon but they don’t deter attackers, who have a small window to get away from the bunch on a 76-km stage.
4 attackers lead the way
David Delgado (Burgos-BH), the Omani national champion Mohamed Al-Wahibi (Oman National Team) and Ariya Phounsavath (Roojai Insurance) set off at km 4. They’re joined at the front by Anton Palzer (Bora-Hansgrohe). UAE Team Emirates set the pace in the bunch early in the stage.
The gap reaches 1 minute after 20 km of racing. But it never gets higher than 1’10’’ with 50km to go. Soudal Quick-Step join UAE Team Emirates at the front of the bunch.
A young power duo rises
As the riders enter the second half of the stage, a few drops pour on the riders but the conditions remain favourable. Palzer wants to make the most of the situation with an attack 27km away from the finish. His lead to the bunch is down to 20’’ with 20km to go. He is caught 15km away from the line.
Munder Al-Hsani (Oman National Team) tried to upset the peloton with a daring attack inside the last 8km. He opened a gap of 18’’ but was caught 4km to go.
Several teams tried to position their sprinters. But when the road rose ahead of them with 500m to go, there was no containing Paul Magnier and Luke Lamperti (Soudal Quick-Step), punching their way to the stage win (Magnier) and the red jersey (Lamperti), while Bryan Coquard (Cofidis) finished 3rd.