Petacchi wins stage as Huzarski takes lead


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Petacchi wins stage as Huzarski takes lead

Sprinter Alessandro Petacchi won stage four of the Tour of Turkey while Bartosz Huzarski took over at the top of the general classification.
Lampre rider Petacchi, who had failed to fire in bunch sprint finishes in each of the first three stages, edged out Huzarski and Alexander Efimkin at the end of the 207km stage from Marmaris to Pamukkale.
"This was a hard stage because of the long climb at the beginning where a big selection was made," said Petacchi, referring to a 500m ascent to the Sakar Pass mountain sprint 36km after the start.
"I still don't know how but I've managed to stay in the first group. Sometimes I can go well in the climbs. Today I felt very good despite the rain and the energy I spent on the road.
"Only two of my team-mates (Aitor Perez Arrieta and Denys Kostyuk) were with me in the front group. At some stage, I told them to stop pacing behind the breakaway riders.
"But they didn’t listen to me and they continued chasing so they've done a great job. I owe them a big thank you."
Huzarski received a big time bonus for finishing second and was able to take over the turquoise jersey as overnight leader Manuel Belletti withdrew with a fever mid-way through the stage.
"It's a big surprise to become the leader of this race," the Polish Netapp rider said. "In the last kilometre, I was trying to help my friend Jesus Del Nero.
"With 600 metres to go, he was on my wheel, looking really fast and really strong but when I turned back with 300m to go, there was a hole so I just tried to sprint as fast as I could.
"It was a very hard day. It's no shame to be passed at the end by Alessandro Petacchi who has so many sprints in his career before but I've been close to winning. I'm not sure about the coming stages now.
"I'm not so strong but I have a strong team. There are hard stages to come and there might be some rain again. I'm an unexpected leader, that's for sure."
Thursday's stage five is the longest of the Tour with the riders tackle a 218.6km route from Denizli to Fethiye.

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