Despite the fact he was debilitated by the antibiotic therapy, that was necessary in order to face the bronchitis he’s suffering for, Rui Costa (Bettini photo) uses his class to pedal in the head bunch until the end of the 12th stage of Tour de France, 185,5 km from Bourg en Bresse to Saint Etienne.
The impressions of the World Champion: “Today I can say to be more happy, the feelings are much improved compared to yesterday, a day when i really suffered a lot because of this bronchitis that is debilitating. I think I’m back to 70% of my strength, thanks to the antibiotics therapy that was prescribed by the doctor of the Team and I am confident that I can still improve in the coming days. The race for me today was quiet without too many worries, the final had many ups and downs that I’ve faced quietly in the belly of the group.”
Sixty riders could reach Saint Etienne in the head group, that was selected on the two Kom that characterized the final 50 km of the stage (Col de Brosses, 3rd category, and Cote de Grammond, 4th category at 20 km to the finish).
Also thanks to the support of their mates, both Rui Costa and Horner approached the climbs in good positions, so that they can obtain the 48th and the 22nd places on the final sprint that assigned the victory to Kristoff on Sagan and Demare.
Gallopin was on late at the arrival, so the LAMPRE-MERIDA duo could climb one position in the overall classification: Rui Costa is 13th and Horner is 16th.
1- Kristoff 4h32’11″
2- Sagan s.t.
3- Demare s.t.
4- Albasini s.t.
5- Navardauskas s.t.
22- Horner s.t.
48- Rui Costa s.t.
103- Durasek 2’24″, 108- Serpa s.t., 134- Valls 5’45″, 160- Oliveira 10’12″, 166- Cimolai s.t.
13- Rui Costa 5’34″
16- Horner 7’33″