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Sunday 29 January 2023 Dublin: 5°C
Jean Francois Badias Slovenian rider Primoz Roglic of Jumbo Visma wearing the overall leader's yellow jersey.
# Tense
Roglic survives Yates attack to win Paris-Nice
A 10th World Tour stage race triumph for the Slovenian.

PRIMOZ ROGLIC WON cycling’s eight-day Paris-Nice race on Sunday, crossing the finish line third on a rainy French Riviera seafront for a narrow, tense victory.

The Slovenian rider had to chase hard as race runner-up and Sunday’s stage winner Simon Yates broke away of the final climb before a 15km daredevil downhill dash into Nice where he won the day on the celebrated Promenade des Anglais.

Roglic famously lost the 2020 Tour de France on the final day and crashed out here on the final day last year whilst also in the lead.

On Sunday, he was again at risk but was led up the last steep climb by teammate Wout van Aert who shepherded him all the way to the finish line to end the race, 29 seconds ahead of Yates.

“I don’t go without a bit of drama,” a relieved Roglic said at the finish line. “It was so steep and so hard. A big thanks to Wout, he can do anything, he’s half human, half motor.”

Ineos rider Dani Martinez came third at 2min 37sec after he suffered an unfortunate puncture at the start of the final climb.

If Bike Exchange rider Yates was in any way disappointed at missing out on the overall win he gracefully hid that as he stretched his arms wide on the finish line for his first win since last May.

“It’s always on your mind when you start getting ahead,” Yates said after his second overall second place on this race.

“But I’m more than happy with the stage win,” said Yates, whose brother Adam came fourth overall.

For Roglic this was a 10th World Tour stage race triumph. Only Chris Froome has more amongst active riders in the peloton with 12.

Paris-Nice is famous for final day twists but Roglic went into the last day with a 49sec lead over Yates after surviving a series of attacks Saturday on the steep slopes of the Col de Turini where he dug in and endured.

The triumph was actually carved in the opening first four stages where Roglic’s team Jumbo dominated, claiming a podium sweep twice.

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Van Aert won the green points jersey given for sprinting and top ten finishes.

“Maybe now I can repeat that at the big one this summer at the Tour de France,” he said.

Many will ask the same of Roglic too.

– © AFP 2022

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