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Paris-Nice 2014: Photo Special!
pn14st8_betancur This year’s Paris-Nice, the famous race to the sun saw a change of format with no prologue, no time trial and no mountain finish meaning the final result was not decided until the very last stage and even the very last kilometer. Let’s wrap up the action with a look at all the results and best photos from the last 8 days.



Stage 1: Bouhanni Rules The Streets
With no prologue on offer ASO instead offered up a 163km road stage to kick off the race, starting and finishing in the tough Yveline’s suburb of Mantes-la-Jolie. King of the rough streets was FDJ’s ex-boxer, turned sprinter Nacer Bouhanni who started the race off in perfect fashion for his FDJ team and French fans.

pn14st1_nacer

It was no easy win for Bouhanni though as he fell earlier in the day but was able to remount and rejoin the front half of the peloton – something that some of the pre-race GC favorites like Sylvain Chavanel, Thomas Voeckler, Simon Gerrans, Romain Bardet and more couldn’t do leaving their GC battle over before the race had even left the outskirts of Paris.

pn14st1_crash
Suburban streets, road furniture, only partially closed roads and a nervous peloton led to a host of crashes on Stage 1.

Stage 1: Results:
1 Nacer Bouhanni (Fra) FDJ.fr 3:53:11
2 John Degenkolb (Ger) Team Giant-Shimano
3 Gianni Meersman (Bel) Omega Pharma – Quick-Step Cycling Team
4 Jose Joaquin Rojas Gil (Spa) Movistar Team
5 Tyler Farrar (USA) Garmin Sharp

GC After Stage 1:
1 Nacer Bouhanni (Fra) FDJ.fr 3:53:01
2 Gianni Meersman (Bel) Omega Pharma – Quick-Step Cycling Team 0:00:01
3 John Degenkolb (Ger) Team Giant-Shimano 0:00:04
4 Greg Van Avermaet (Bel) BMC Racing Team 0:00:08
5 Geraint Thomas (GBr) Team Sky 0:00:09


Stage 2: Hofland Surprises Many
Stage 2 saw the traditional long break kept in check by Nacer Bouhanni’s FDJ squad looking for a repeat sprint victory but in the end it was young Moreno Hofland (Belkin) who took the win beating John Degenkolb (Giant-Shimano) and Bouhanni. Once again numerous crashes punctuated the stage including one in the final kilometer although it didn’t affect the result on the stage. Bouhanni’s time bonus for his 3rd place saw him keep his yellow jersey although John Degenkolb was now lurking just two seconds down.

pn14st2_trees

pn14st1_fdj

pn14st2_hofland

Stage 2 Results:
1 Moreno Hofland (Ned) Belkin-Pro Cycling Team 4:53:46
2 John Degenkolb (Ger) Team Giant-Shimano
3 Nacer Bouhanni (Fra) FDJ.fr
4 Alexander Kristoff (Nor) Team Katusha
5 Thor Hushovd (Nor) BMC Racing Team

GC After Stage 2:
1 Nacer Bouhanni (Fra) FDJ.fr 8:46:43
2 John Degenkolb (Ger) Team Giant-Shimano 0:00:02
3 Moreno Hofland (Ned) Belkin-Pro Cycling Team 0:00:04
4 Geraint Thomas (GBr) Team Sky 0:00:13
5 Bryan Coquard (Fra) Team Europcar 0:00:14


Stage 3: Degenkolb Motors To Victory
On the Nevers Magny-Cours racing circuit John Degenkolb finally got his win after two second places in two days and in doing so he also took the yellow from Bouhanni. Once again the day long break was swept up in the closing stages and Degenkolb was able to profit from some perfect teamwork with a well timed sprint to beat Matthew Goss and Jose Joaquin Rojas to the line.

pn14st3_quemeneur620
Perrig Quemeneur was the last survivor of the day long all French break but despite his brave efforts he couldn’t hold off the peloton that was intent on another bunch sprint.

pn14st3_win

Stage 3 Results:
1 John Degenkolb (Ger) Team Giant-Shimano 4:27:26
2 Matthew Harley Goss (Aus) Orica GreenEdge
3 Jose Joaquin Rojas Gil (Spa) Movistar Team
4 Borut Bozic (Slo) Astana Pro Team
5 Tom Boonen (Bel) Omega Pharma – Quick-Step Cycling Team

GC After Stage 3:
1 John Degenkolb (Ger) Team Giant-Shimano 13:14:01
2 Nacer Bouhanni (Fra) FDJ.fr 0:00:08
3 Moreno Hofland (Ned) Belkin-Pro Cycling Team 0:00:12
4 Jose Joaquin Rojas Gil (Spa) Movistar Team 0:00:18
5 Geraint Thomas (GBr) Team Sky 0:00:21


Stage 4: Slagter Shows His Class
Tom Jelte Slagter (Garmin-Sharp) outsprinted Geraint Thomas (Sky) to win an extremely difficult stage 4 that saw the GC turned upside down. Wilco Kelderman (Belkin) took third on the day five seconds down after attacking from the 27-strong following group.

Overnight leader John Degenkolb rode well in defense of his jersey but the bonus seconds awarded to Geraint Thomas for his 2nd place saw him take the yellow by three seconds with stage winner Slagter moving up to third overall at four seconds. Even at this early stage of the race it was clear that the battle for GC honors in the 2014 Paris-Nice was going to come down to seconds.

pn14st4_slagter
Slagter made his move on the category-2 rated Côte du Mont Brouilly…

pn14st4_pair
before quickly being joined by a very strong looking Geraint Thomas.

Stage 4 Results:
1 Tom Jelte Slagter (Ned) Garmin Sharp 5:00:09
2 Geraint Thomas (GBr) Team Sky
3 Wilco Kelderman (Ned) Belkin-Pro Cycling Team 0:00:05
4 Michael Matthews (Aus) Orica GreenEdge
5 Zdenek Stybar (Cze) Omega Pharma – Quick-Step Cycling Team

GC After Stage 4:
1 Geraint Thomas (GBr) Team Sky 18:14:25
2 John Degenkolb (Ger) Team Giant-Shimano 0:00:03
3 Tom Jelte Slagter (Ned) Garmin Sharp 0:00:04
4 Jose Joaquin Rojas Gil (Spa) Movistar Team 0:00:08
5 Samuel Dumoulin (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale 0:00:12


Stage 5: Betancur Bursts Through
Carlos Betancur (AG2R) sowed the seeds for his overall victory with a daring late three-man breakaway on Stage 5 that just held off the charging peloton. Betancur escaped with Bob Jungels (Trek Factory Racing) and Jakob Fuglsang (Astana) eight kilometers from the finish and the young Colombian was able to get the better of his two breakaway mates in the sprint to take a well deserved victory and the crucial bonus seconds that came with it.

pn14st5_betancur

pn14st5_view
Before Betancur’s victory the race passed through numerous beautiful small French villages and unlike in some other recent editions of Paris-Nice we were able to see the scenery perfectly as the weather was sunny for racing every single day.

Stage 5 Results:
1 Carlos Alberto Betancur Gomez (Col) AG2R La Mondiale 3:38:15
2 Bob Jungels (Lux) Trek Factory Racing
3 Jakob Fuglsang (Den) Astana Pro Team
4 Bryan Coquard (Fra) Team Europcar 0:00:02
5 Tom Boonen (Bel) Omega Pharma – Quick-Step Cycling Team

GC After Stage 5:
1 Geraint Thomas (GBr) Team Sky 21:52:42
2 John Degenkolb (Ger) Team Giant-Shimano 0:00:03
3 Tom Jelte Slagter (Ned) Garmin Sharp 0:00:04
4 Carlos Alberto Betancur Gomez (Col) AG2R La Mondiale 0:00:05
5 Jose Joaquin Rojas Gil (Spa) Movistar Team 0:00:08


Stage 6: Betancur Strikes Again
Stage 6 was one that many riders were waiting for with its finish on the famous short, sharp climb to the line at Fayence.

pn14st6_view
Before the peloton got to Fayence though there were many other steep climbs to cross en route.

pn14st6_costa
Once on the climb stage winner Slagter looked good until a mechanical robbed him of all hope and then World Champ Rui Costa looked good for the win…

pn14st6_win
until Betancur fought his way back and straight passed Costa to take his second straight stage win and this time the yellow jersey with it.

Stage 6 Results:
1 Carlos Alberto Betancur Gomez (Col) AG2R La Mondiale 5:12:11
2 Rui Alberto Faria Da Costa (Por) Lampre-Merida
3 Zdenek Stybar (Cze) Omega Pharma – Quick-Step Cycling Team 0:00:03
4 Geraint Thomas (GBr) Team Sky
5 Arthur Vichot (Fra) FDJ.fr

GC After Stage 6:
1 Carlos Alberto Betancur Gomez (Col) AG2R La Mondiale 27:04:48
2 Geraint Thomas (GBr) Team Sky 0:00:08
3 Rui Alberto Faria Da Costa (Por) Lampre-Merida 0:00:18
4 Zdenek Stybar (Cze) Omega Pharma – Quick-Step Cycling Team 0:00:22
5 Jose Joaquin Rojas Gil (Spa) Movistar Team 0:00:24


Stage 7: Slagter Bags A Double
Tom-Jelte Slagter (Garmin-Sharp) put the previous day’s disappointment behind him to win his second stage of the race this year forcing Rui Costa into second once again with yellow jerseyed Carlos Betancur taking third.

pn14st7_thomas
Before the action of the final uphill sprint there was action of a different kind as 2nd overall, Geraint Thomas crashed out of the race on a fast descent.

pn14st7_sprint

Stage 7 Results:
1 Tom Jelte Slagter (Ned) Garmin Sharp 5:00:05
2 Rui Alberto Faria Da Costa (Por) Lampre-Merida
3 Carlos Alberto Betancur Gomez (Col) AG2R La Mondiale
4 Jose Joaquin Rojas Gil (Spa) Movistar Team
5 Arthur Vichot (Fra) FDJ.fr

GC After Stage 7:
1 Carlos Alberto Betancur Gomez (Col) AG2R La Mondiale 32:04:49
2 Rui Alberto Faria Da Costa (Por) Lampre-Merida 0:00:14
3 Zdenek Stybar (Cze) Omega Pharma – Quick-Step Cycling Team 0:00:26
4 Jose Joaquin Rojas Gil (Spa) Movistar Team 0:00:27
5 Jakob Fuglsang (Den) Astana Pro Team 0:00:29


Stage 8: Vichot Brings It Home For France
Instead of being a long stage that eventually wound its way down to the beach and the famous Promenade des Anglais in Nice for the finish, this final stage was a short one in the hills behind Nice and would start and finish on the Promenade. With 15 riders still within 1 minute of his lead, Carlos Betancur had reason to be worried at the start of the race but both he and his team rode superbly, never faltering despite numerous attacks.

pn14st8_nibali
Vincenzo Nibali was one of a number of attackers that made life difficult for Betancur and his Ag2r team.

pn14st8_schleck
One of the most dangerous attacks of the day occurred right at the end when Frank Schleck and Simon Spilak got away. At the start of the stage Spilak was 10th overall just 39 seconds down and he was only caught in the final kilometer.

pn14st8_win
With Spilak and then Schleck caught, French champ Arthur Vichot came through in the sprint with a double victory taking the stage and also moving himself up onto the final GC podium in 3rd thanks to the bonus seconds for the win.

pn14_betancur
Strong and attentive all race, Carlos Betancur was the worthy winner of the 2014 Paris-Nice.

Stage 8 Results:
1 Arthur Vichot (Fra) FDJ.fr 3:06:56
2 Jose Joaquin Rojas Gil (Spa) Movistar Team
3 Cyril Gautier (Fra) Team Europcar
4 Damiano Caruso (Ita) Cannondale
5 Wilco Kelderman (Ned) Belkin-Pro Cycling Team

Final General Classification:
1 Carlos Alberto Betancur Gomez (Col) AG2R La Mondiale 35:11:45
2 Rui Alberto Faria Da Costa (Por) Lampre-Merida 0:00:14
3 Arthur Vichot (Fra) FDJ.fr 0:00:20
4 Jose Joaquin Rojas Gil (Spa) Movistar Team 0:00:21
5 Jakob Fuglsang (Den) Astana Pro Team 0:00:29
6 Cyril Gautier (Fra) Team Europcar 0:00:31
7 Stefan Denifl (Aut) IAM Cycling 0:00:35
8 Simon Spilak (Slo) Team Katusha 0:00:36
9 Peter Velits (Svk) BMC Racing Team 0:00:39
10 Tony Gallopin (Fra) Lotto Belisol 0:00:41
11 Sébastien Reichenbach (Swi) IAM Cycling 0:00:46
12 Gorka Izaguirre Insausti (Spa) Movistar Team 0:00:50
13 Wilco Kelderman (Ned) Belkin-Pro Cycling Team 0:01:05
14 Damiano Caruso (Ita) Cannondale 0:01:12
15 Zdenek Stybar (Cze) Omega Pharma – Quick-Step Cycling Team 0:01:33
16 Tom Jelte Slagter (Ned) Garmin Sharp 0:01:37
17 Jan Bakelants (Bel) Omega Pharma – Quick-Step Cycling Team 0:01:57
18 Bob Jungels (Lux) Trek Factory Racing 0:02:05
19 Jon Izaguirre Insausti (Spa) Movistar Team 0:02:06
20 Eduardo Sepulveda (Arg) Bretagne – Seche Environnement 0:02:09

 

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