Russ Downing has moved up to seventh overall in the Cinturon de Mallorca after taking a second stage win, whilst Dan Lloyd is now lying second on gc.
At the end of the stage that included a double ascent of the notorious sa Batalla climb, Downing (Pinarello RT) finished eight seconds ahead of a six man group containing Lloyd (An Post-M. Donelly-Grant Thornton-Sean Kelly) and new race leader Chris Meschenmoser (Ista).
Despite its reputation, sa Batalla did not cause the race to fall apart as much as expected. Instead the main contenders preferred to wait until the run-in to Inca.
The last 15 kilometres of the stage, on the other hand, saw one attack after another, and finally seven riders, including Downing and Lloyd, went clear.
Downing then made his move to take a second stage in 24 hours, a victory which now has him leading overall in the points competition.
Saturday?s stage, starting and finishing in Maria de la Salud, is flatter and should see a bunch sprint like Friday?s – won by Downing – at Port de Pollenca. The race finishes on Sunday.
1 Russell Downing (GB) Pinarello RT 134.4km in 3hr 11min 23sec
2 Eric Bauman (Ger) Sparkasse at 8sec
3 Martin Moubal (Cze) Ratisbona
4 Roberto Alvarez (Spa) Burgos
5 Stian Remme (Nor) Sparebanken all same time
|OVERALL AFTER STAGE THREE|
Chris Meschmoser (Ger) Ista 06hr 44min 47sec
2 Daniel Lloyd (GB) An Post- M. Donelly – Grant Thornton – Sean Kelly at 1sec
3 Stian Remme (Nor) Sparebanken at 16sec
4 Jorg Lehman (Ger) Ista at 24sec
5 Dirk Muller (Ger) Sparkasse at 25sec
Russ Downing wins a stage of Cinturon
Russ takes charge in battle of the brothers