Team Sky have recently published a series of articles entitled ‘Ride Of My Life’ where they’ve asked various riders on their team to discuss their most memorable day on a bike.

They asked Nicolas Roche to select his day on the bike that was most memorable and the Irishman chose Stage 3 of the 2011 Tour of Beijing. It was a 162-kilometre stage from MenTouGou to YongNing Town.

When asked why the day was so memorable, Roche responds: “Because it was a day when everything ran like clockwork. The only reason I’d gone to Beijing that year was to target that stage.”

“My team at the time [Ag2r] had told me the stage was perfect for me, and so it turned out. It was also memorable because I went up against Chris Froome and Phil Deignan.”

Roche had managed to go clear with Froome and Deignan on the final climb, and at the finish, Froome tailed off so it came down to a sprint between him and his friend Deignan.

“As Froomey dropped back, Phil and I went toe-to-toe and I just outsprinted him at the line,” Roche explained. “I was ecstatic, and more relieved than anything else.

“I’d had a hard time since the Dauphine crash, so to put that behind me and deliver for the team was great. The plan worked to perfection, and days like that don’t come around very often.”

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