Mohorič 2nd on the closing stage of the Tour of Slovenia As Novak Podiums in GC

After five days of racing, the Tour of Slovenia ended with its final stage in Novo mesto, where Team Bahrain Victorious put on another impressive display as Matej Mohorič took second place:” On the downhill, I didn’t want to take a risk, and later we came in the final together. I thought I might even win, but in the last meters, Tadej showed his strength in the sprint, and he deserves this win.”

Tour of Slovenia 2022 – 28th Edition – 5th stage Vrhnika – Novo Mesto 155,7 km – 19/06/2022 – Tadej Pogacar (SLO – UAE Team Emirates) – Rafal Majka (POL – UAE Team Emirates) – Domen Novak (SLO – Bahrain Victorious) – photo Tommaso Pelagalli/SprintCyclingAgency©2022

Domen Novak capped off the race by finishing on the podium behind the UAE Emirates duo Tadej Pogacar and Rafa Majka: “I kept 3rd place in the overall ranking, and I am satisfied. Today, the stage was not easy. I knew the last ascent since this is my hometown, and I enjoyed it immensely in front of the home fans. Before this race, I knew I had good legs, as I always have after grand tours. However, the truth is that I felt tired in the second half of this race due to past Giro, and I had to repeat in my head that I am capable of being one of the first three … and I succeeded.”
Reflecting on a new role as team leader Novak said: “I still have problems with taking over the responsibility of a leader. I’m slowly becoming more self-confident. It needs a few years to mature. For some, 21 years are enough, but some of us need more time,”

The young Matevž Govekar made his debut with the team on home roads and enjoyed his first outing: “I enjoy the team, I enjoy racing. This race is significant for me because we race on home roads and in front of my fans. The teammates and staff welcomed me well, we were going well, and everything was as I thought or better. I am honoured that they gave me a chance in the 3rd stage, where I had no major burden or pressure. I am still learning, and after the race, we analyzed what was good and what was not. Everything is at the top level. I am not saying it wasn’t good in the previous team, but here it is better and at the most top-level possible. Riders are really well taken care of. I am satisfied with my performance at the Tour of Slovenia and look forward to the next races.”

Sports director Gorazd Štangelj commented on the race: “I am satisfied with the overall standing. Our team was the protagonist on all stages and made the race interesting. We always tried and never waited. I like this way of racing. Of course, I would be happier with the victory on individual stages, but it didn’t work out, unfortunately. Once, they made a mistake in the premature attack, the second time, as the roads were slippery, the boys finished the stage with a bit of reserve. In the sprint stage, there wasn’t a perfect lead-out at the end, and every small mistake created the result. We also had a new member in the team, Matevž, and it was a great opportunity for him to get used to trying and racing at the highest level immediately, which he succeeded in doing. Matevž feels good in the team, and it shows he can do great in the future. Matej is now ready for the Tour de France. With today’s 2nd place, he showed his present condition. His downhill today with the best of the best was again impressive. It’s a pity he didn’t win, but this is racing. Now everyone is ready for the national championships at the end of next week. As mentioned, I am satisfied with 3rd place overall. This was the goal we set. Domen took on the leader role, proving that he deserves it.”

(All pictures can be used for editorial and non-commercial usages only and are copyright @Sprintcycling @TeamBahrainVictorious)

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