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Tour of Britain 2019: Edoardo Affini wins Stage 6 time-trial as Mathieu van der Poel regains overall lead

Jack Elton-Walters
12 Sep 2019

Affini spent a long time in the leader's chair but was rewarded with the stage win while Mathieu van der Poel regained the overall lead

Edoardo Affini (Mitchelton-Scott) won the Stage 6 individual time-trial at the 2019 Tour of Britain as teammate Matteo Trentin faded in the second half of the ride after a promising start. Trentin's time loss means he surrenders the overall lead to Mathieu van der Poel (Correndon-Circus), from whom he'd taken the green jersey the day before.

Van der Poel and Trentin had been equal-fastest at the intermediate split but both tailed off in the second half of the time-trial, although to differing degrees.

Race against the clock

Picking out interesting points from a 14km ITT can be difficult. Rob Scott drew attention early on, unfortunately not due to posting a fast time but instead because he looked to be stuck in a big gear and in need of a bike change, but the car of his soon-to-be defunct Team Wiggins-Le Col squad was nowhere to be seen.

Not long after Scott finished, Alex Dowsett (Katusha-Alpecin) – current British National Champion against the clock – rolled down the start ramp to a noticeably louder cheer than other riders had been getting.

At this point, Affini was already in the hot seat as the rider with the day's fastest time. Dowsett went through the intermediate split up on Affini's time but couldn't maintain his high pace, and in the end finished 13 seconds down.

That may not sound like much but plenty of other riders managed to slot in between Dowsett's time and that of Affini as the day wore on – something a specialist of his calibre is likely to be disappointed with.

Tanel Kangert (Education First) went off hard, passing riders ahead of him inclusing Connor Swift (Arkea-Samsic), and the stage looked like it could be his when he went through the intermediate split. However he also faded in the second half as Affini remained on top.

Going into the stage there was a gap of only 22 seconds between Trentin in the lead to 15th place overall, so the results gave the GC positions a bit of a shake-up

Trentin's slender lead of three seconds over Van der Poel in second was the key gap to look at rather than the rest of the top 20.

Van der Poel and Trentin went through the intermediate split with the day's joint-fastest time (along with Kangert), but neither was able to push on for a stage win that could have been decisive for the general classification with just two stages remaining, both punchy and likely to be tough on the peloton.