Vuelta a España: Pascal Ackermann jumps too early after misjudging finale

After a rough spring, a victory would have come in handy for the 28-year-old.

Photo: Tim de Waele/Getty Images

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MONTILLA, Spain (VN) — Pascal Ackermann thought he was timing his sprint just right at the Vuelta a España.

From the outside world, it looked like the German ace on UAE Team Emirates was going too early. When he realized how soon he’d jumped in the uphill finale in Friday’s 13 stage, it was too late.

“The team did an amazing job today and I saw the 500m sign, and we still had a long way to go the corner, and then I thought it would be 250m to go from there,” Ackermann said.

Ackermann was in for a rude surprise when he rounded the final corner in the grinding uphill kicker.

“The peloton slowed down a bit, and I just said, OK, now I go,” he said. “And when I went around the corner, I saw the sign, it was not the 200, it was 300m to go, and then it was just too long.”

Ackermann pounded his handlebar in frustration as Mads Pedersen (Trek-Segafredo) powered past him for the win, timing it just right. Bryan Coquard (Cofidis) swept past him at the line, and Ackermann trailed across third.

A victory would have come in handy for the 28-year-old, who’s only won twice so far in 2022 in his first season with UAE Emirates.

After an early win, a rough spring saw him post a string of DNF’s before finally finding his legs with a stage win at the Tour de Pologne this summer.

Ackermann vows to keep fighting.

“The legs are definitely there, and that’s the shit,” he said.

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