Brand among the points in Abu Dhabi

Brand among the points in Abu Dhabi”

Team Sunweb's Phil Bauhaus was the eventual victor of Stage 3, needing a photo finish to prove he crossed the line before Marcel Kittel. The Italian finished fourth to Bauhaus on stage 3 to keep the overall lead, but more importantly, Viviani won the second intermediate sprint of the day at 82km and took a commanding lead in the points classification, a prize he'll hope to keep as others set their sights on the GC. I'm a bit frustrated for not getting the win, but that's cycling: "sometimes you win, sometimes you don't".

"It's hard to expect a win in such a star-studded field of sprinters, but I knew I had a very good team here", explained the 23-year-old Critérium du Dauphiné stage victor. Every win is important.

A last minute inside surge to the line fell just short for Marcel Kittel, who remains winless in his first year with Katusha-Alpecin. It's early in the season. The 27-year-old Dutchman is fresh off a breakout year in 2017 - a year that included not only a rainbow jersey win in Norway, but also a BinckBank Tour victory, as well as two stages, including a 39.8 ITT, at the Giro d'Italia en route to winning the general classification. "We'll build our confidence up on the win I got today".

Meanwhile, ?UAE Team Emirates' Alexander Kristoff continued his consistent performances on the Abu Dhabi Tour, with the Norwegian battling back from a mid-race crash to secure a top 10 finish on Friday's stage three.

From there the sprinters' team picked up the chase, with Quick-Step sending James Knox up to marshal the team's interests at the tip of the spear until the sprint trains started jostling for position inside 10km to go. "If you compare yourself everyday to past year you only get frustrated by the days you don't feel as good - I don't do that. However, I still managed to get a good position and still be in the mix in the final meters".

Riders will now gear up for an Individual Time Trial - new to the Abu Dhabi Tour for 2018 - as they look to pick up vital seconds on their fellow GC contenders.

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