• Luka Pibernik claimed his first WorldTour stage victory. (Getty)Source: Getty
The breakaway beat the sprint trains on Stage 6 of the Eneco Tour with Luka Pibernik emerging as the winner after 185.2km of racing from Riemst to Lanaken in Belgium.
25 Sep 2016 - 7:11 AM  UPDATED 25 Sep 2016 - 7:54 AM

The 22-year-old Pibernik (Lampre-Merida) beat Mark McNally (Wanty-Groupe Gobert) and Bert Van Lerberghe of Topsport Vlaanderen-Baloise for his first victory at WorldTour level.

Australian Rohan Dennis (BMC) still leads in the overall standings, his advantage 16 seconds from team-mate Taylor Phinney and 24 seconds over Tony Martin (Etixx-QuickStep) ahead of Sunday's final stage.

Piberknik was part of an early breakaway that looked set to be caught by the peloton, but they miscalculated and allowed the remaining riders to sprint for the victory.

“This morning I never thought I would win," Pibernik said. “I never thought we would make it to the finish.” 

"This is a great victory. The team leader said I should go in the attack today. That's what I did with just one goal, to make it to the finish as fast as possible."

"It doesn't happen often that the breakaway manages to go all the way, but with one kilometre to go I figured we would make it. Then I saved my energy, chose the wheel of Gougeard and gave everything I had with 200 metres to go."

Stage 7 will be a 197.8 kilometre ride from Bornem to Grammont and includes course features taken from the Tour of Flanders.

With its punchy profile the stage will be the last opportunity for Martin or fourth placed Peter Sagan (Tinkoff) to pull back Dennis.

“I think the weather is going to turn a little bit tomorrow, and anything can happen on wet cobbles,” Dennis said. “My legs are good, the team is good and it’s just luck that will be on our side. If we repeat what we did today, tomorrow then it will be perfect.

“Today we showed that we have the team to control it and look it would have been great to have someone else helping but maybe tomorrow someone will be more willing to help out and go for a sprint or they’ll want to try something on the Murr. So it might end up working out that we don’t have to do so much and we can save it for the finish.”

“It would be great if Greg Van Avermaet could win the stage tomorrow like he did in 2014 and if that’s the case then I’ll be right behind him because the team will be leading him out. For the GC it’s obviously 100 per cent for me now but going for the stage with Greg would help me out anyway.”