The French stage race Paris-Nice was on Sunday kicked off with a victory for the German Maximilian Schachmann.
The 26-year-old Bora-rider settled the matter on 1. stage in a sprint finish with Julian Alaphilippe (Quick-Step), Dylan Teuns (Bahrain-McLaren) and Tiesj Benoot (Lotto Soudal).
On the final straight signaled the German, that he had no more strength to run with. But it turned out to be a charade, as he soon after stepped away from the competitors.
Through most of the day was, however, not much evidence of that Schachmann had to end up raising his arms in triumph in the start - and målbyen Plaisir.
In a spectacular end after a draining bike race over 154 kilometres fought Schachmann and Teuns up to Alaphilippe and Benoot on the stage last increase.
Alaphilippe and Benoot had at the time been promoting in small 30 kilometers in it that looked like a critical outbreak.
With the rain and the cold standing directly into the faces had they built up a lead, which had long remained at around 30 seconds.
Down behind the large group of around 35 man had the teams find it difficult to find into an organized cooperation.
Briefly tried the Mads Würtz Schmidt (Israel Start-Up Nation) to fight up to the duo, but the dane was sucked back in no time.
With 15 kilometres left, it was as if that belief disappeared in the great forfølgergruppe, and Alaphilippe and Benoot had suddenly 45 seconds down. It looked like a resignation.
But then there was still momentum in the large group, and lead to frontduoen was quietly gobbled up.
The option utilized Maximilian Schachmann in a brilliant way to ensure the year's first victory.
the Paris-Nice consists of eight stages and ends on the next Sunday in Nice.
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