Mingachevir, May 9, AZERTAC
Daniel Turek of the Cycling Academy Team took his first professional win, easily winning the sprint of a break group to take the fourth stage of the Tour d'Azerbaidjan. He finished several meters ahead of Clemens Fankhauser (Hrinkow Advarics) and Conor Dunne (An Post – ChainReaction). Brenton Jones of Drapac led the peloton across the finish line 42 seconds later.
There were no changes in the GC, with Primoz Roglic (Adria Mobil) still leading ahead of Jasper Ockeloen (Parkhotel Valkenburg) and Matej Mugerli (Synergy Baku Cycling Project). Marko Kump (Adria Mobil) won the first intermediate sprint to increase his lead in the sprint jersey rankings, and Alexander Surutkovych maintained his mountain jersey on a stage which had no climbs.
The break group took a while to form, but the four riders in the group meshed well. They built up a lead of around five minutes on the mostly flat course, and had enough left to hold off the field as they approached the finish.
The sun was shining at the start, but didn’t stay out the whole day. The fourth and longest stage, 205 km from Gabala to Mingachevir, is a new one to the race this year. Marko Kump (Adria Mobil) took the first intermediate sprint, padding his lead in that ranking, ahead of Jurgen van Diemen (Parkhotel Valkenburg CT) and Matej Mugerli (Synergy Baku Cycling Project).
The break group of the day was Griffin Easter (Airgas-Safeway), Conor Dunne (An Post-ChainReaction), Clemens Fankhauser (Hrinkow Advarics) and Daniel Turek (Cycling Academy Team). They pulled away to a gap of more than five minutes. Turek took both the second intermediate sprints.
They held on well to their lead, taking 2:45 with them into the final 30 km, but it dropped to about a minute and a half with 10 km to go. The field had cut the lead to less than a minute as the finish neared, but was unable to catch them and set up the expected bunch sprint. Turek crossed the finish line several meters ahead of his former break companions, with Fankhauser and Dunne one second back and Easter at three seconds.