Wout van Aert is the leader in Paris-Nice . Our compatriot let the peloton drive on the last climb, so that teammate Primoz Roglic takes over the yellow jersey. The stage win was a prey for Brandon McNulty. The American completed a solo of 40 kilometers.
Paris-Nice is suddenly a hotbed of cases of illness. No fewer than eighteen riders, some also due to an injury, did not start in the fifth stage. Kleppers like Lampaert, Trentin and Stybar did not get on their bikes. Politt, Groenewegen, Rickaert, Keukeleire, Van Asbroeck, Capiot, Bissegger, Mäder, Champoussin, Hagen, Piccoli, Powless, Sbaragli, Vermaerke and Vine also got off course.
At about 11.10 am the starting gun sounded in Saint-Just-Saint-Rambert. Wout van Aert saw in his yellow jersey how hard they fought for a ticket for the flight of the day. In the end, Vanhoucke was in the right breakaway. Our compatriot from Lotto-Soudal was joined by Bonnamour, Doull, Fernandez, Jorgenson, Madouas, McNulty, Mørkøv, Pichon and Turgis.
On the last climb of the day, McNulty left his fellow escapees on the spot, while Van Aert let the pack drive further ahead. Our compatriot opted for his own pace and said goodbye to his yellow jersey about 40 kilometers from the finish. ‘WvA’ does not want to belittle itself, with an eye on the classics.
It soon became clear that his teammate Roglic would take over the yellow jersey. The Slovenian became isolated for a while, but never got into trouble. McNulty then soloed again to win. A beautiful song by the American, who recorded the biggest victory of his career. Vanhoucke crossed the line in fourth after a creditable stage.