Tour de Yorkshire: Scarborough

scarborough postcard

As was the case with last year’s race, the 2016 stage to the coastal town of Doncaster saw the GC race decided. After finishing second here at the first edition of the race (and third overall), Thomas Voeckler (Direct Énergie) triumphed on Sunday.

“Because I lost last year I knew the final kilometres would be hard, and I knew how to manage the sprint,” said Voeckler. “It was not only my legs that won today, it was with my head. It was difficult for me to follow the attacks sometimes but I stayed patient and managed to always make my way back.”

“To win the stage and overall makes me really happy. I have experienced many things, but still to have such emotions after 16 years feels good.”

Like last year, it was another action-packed stage, the hilliest of the race. Persistent rain and more strong winds served to make the stage harder, but didn’t repel the breakaway, which went early and included names such as Marco Haller (Katusha), Nick van der Lijke (Roompot Oranje Peloton), Loïc Chetout (Cofidis) and Nathan Haas (Dimension Data).

Haas was the main man of the break, taking maximum mountain points over the first two climbs of the day, with those seven points enough to give him the jersey. The break didn’t last very long out front though, being caught by the peloton on the approach to the tough Côte de Grosmont, some 65km from the finish.

Team Sky were in control of the peloton, working hard to ensure a repeat of last year’s overall victory as Pete Kennaugh, Luke Rowe and young Italian Gianni Moscon made big efforts to fracture the main group. The team’s efforts paid off in the crosswinds of the Yorkshire Moors, with only around twenty men remaining after the Côte de Robin Hood’s Bay.

Voeckler Yorkshire stage 3 2016 TDY

Nikias Arndt (Giant-Alpecin) was the main threat, a fast sprinter who lay third overall. An Sky attack-counter attack on the Côte de Harwood Dale saw him dispatched though, and left a lead trio made up of Nicolas Roche (Team Sky), Adam Yates (Orica-GreenEdge) and Steven Kruijswijk (LottoNL-Jumbo) while Voeckler and Anthony Turgis (Cofidis) chased.

The French duo bridged the gap not long after, setting the stage for a mighty battle over the final climb of the race, the Côte de Oliver’s Mount, which lay just 6km from the finish. Roche was the strongest, and the Irishman got a gap on the descent but soon enough Voeckler had joined him.

Riding around the coastal loop into Scarborough, the two were working together well, and it was clear that one of them would end up the race winner. Ten seconds behind Turgis was doing his best to get across – the second-year pro would take the overall victory with a second-place finish.

However it wasn’t to be for Turgis – the gap was insurmountable. Voeckler was well-placed on Roche’s wheel going into the final kilometre and he wouldn’t be beaten to the line by a Sky rider for the second year in a row. Three hundred metres from the finish he went for it, taking advantage of a lapse in concentration by Roche, and winning the second edition of the Tour de Yorkshire.

Peloton Yorkshire stage 3 2016 TDY

Stage Result
1. Thomas Voeckler (Direct Énergie) 4h51:57
2. Nicolas Roche (Team Sky)
3. Adam Yates (Orica-GreenEdge) +00:09
4. Anthony Turgis (Cofidis)
5. Steven Kruijswijk (LottoNL-Jumbo)
6. Lars-Petter Nordhaug (Team Sky) +00:41
7. Gianni Moscon (Team Sky)
8. Chris Juul-Jensen (Orica-GreenEdge) +01:09
9. Ben Hermans (BMC)
10. Nikias Arndt (Giant-Alpecin)

General Classification
1. Thomas Voeckler (Direct Énergie) 13h05:16
2. Nicolas Roche (Team Sky) +00:06
3. Anthony Turgis (Cofidis) +00:16
4. Adam Yates (Orica-GreenEdge) +00:17
5. Steven Kruijswijk (LottoNL-Jumbo) +00:21
6. Lars-Petter Nordhaug (Team Sky) +00:52
7. Gianni Moscon (Team Sky) +00:53
8. Nikias Arndt (Giant-Alpecin) +01:13
9. Serge Pauwels (Dimension Data) +01:20
10. Dion Smith (One Pro Cycling) +01:21

Climber’s Classification
1. Nathan Haas (Dimension Data) 7pts
2. Richard Handley (One Pro Cycling) 7pts
3. Nicolas Roche (Team Sky) 7pts

Points Classification
1. Dylan Groenewegen (LottoNL-Jumbo) 27pts
2. Danny Van Poppel (Team Sky) 21pts
3. Nikias Arndt (Giant-Alpecin) 19pts

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Tour de Yorkshire: Doncaster

doncaster postcard

It was a case of another day, another Dutch victory at the Tour de Yorkshire on Saturday. Well two more, considering that Kirsten Wild’s (Hitec Products) win at the women’s race was followed later in the day by Danny Van Poppel’s (Team Sky) in the men’s race.

Aside from that similarity, there was much else in common between the two races. One major story of the day was the lack of television pictures as the television transmitter plane was struck by technical difficulties. This meant that the women’s race, due to be televised in its entirety, was not shown at all, while the men’s race also saw large chunks go unseen.

That the two races ended with bunch sprints was more expected. Wild eased to victory by a bikelength from Lucy Garner (Wiggle-High5) to take £15,000 in prize money – the largest on offer in women’s cycling until August’s RideLondon Classique.

Kirsten Wild Yorkshire 2016 COR VOS

Earlier in the day home favourite Lizzie Armitstead (Great Britain) had been on the attack, along with Leah Kirchmann (Liv-Plantur) and Doris Schweizer (Cylance). Schweizer, the original lone breakaway rider, was joined by Armitstead and Kirchmann on the steep climb to Conisborough Castle some 40km out.

The trio had an advantage of over a minute with 15km left to race, but the Yorkshire crowds were ultimately left disappointed as the peloton made the catch just two kilometres from the finish. Come the finish, Wild just had to hop out of Marta Bastianelli’s (Alé-Cipollini) wheel to launch her sprint with 200 metres to go, taking a well-deserved victory.

Race result
1. Kirsten Wild (Hitec Products) 3h22:26
2. Lucy Garner (Wiggle-High5)
3. Floortje Mackaij (Liv-Plantur)
4. Alice Barnes (Great Britain)
5. Marta Bastianelli (Alé-Cipollini)
6. Anna Trevisi (Alé-Cipollini)
7. Jennifer George (Drops Cycling)
8. Nicola Juniper (Great Britain)
9. Nicole Moerig (Podium Ambition)
10. Evie Richards (Great Britain)


Over in the men’s race it was a rather similar affair – break, catch, sprint. Orica-GreenEdge had done much of the work during the run-in to the finish, work that was in vain, much like Team Sky on Friday. Their great sprint hope Caleb Ewan was nowhere in the final sprint though, finishing 30th while race leader Dylan Groenewegen (LottoNL-Jumbo) and Van Poppel did battle at the head of the peloton.

Van Poppel came out on top, edging out his countryman in a photo finish. It was Van Poppel’s first victory for the team since moving from Trek Factory Racing during the winter, and it means he also takes over the leader’s jersey.

Van Poppel Yorkshire stage 2 2016 COR VOS

The early action of the day, not that we saw much of it, was provided by Gruff Lewis (Madison Genesis), Richard Handley (One Pro Cycling), Edmund Bradbury and Josh Edmondson (NFTO), Michael Mørkøv (Katusha) and Stijn Steels (Topsport Vlaanderen-Baloise). This group made up the break of the day, and were later joined by Nicolas Edet (Cofidis).

Handley led over each of the day’s three climbs, taking the lead in the climber’s classification by one point from his teammate Pete Williams. Ten kilometres from the finish the break’s challenge failed, setting up the Dutch showdown on the finishing straight.

Stage Result
1. Danny Van Poppel (Team Sky) 3h04:20
2. Dylan Groenewegen (LottoNL-Jumbo)
3. Nikias Arndt (Giant-Alpecin)
4. Chris Opie (One Pro Cycling)
5. Loïc Chetout (Cofidis)
6. Albert Torres (Raleigh GAC)
7. Rick Zabel (BMC)
8. Christopher Lawless (JLT Condor)
9. Russ Downing (JLT Condor)
10. Magnus Cort Nielsen (Orica-GreenEdge)

General Classification
1. Dylan Groenewegen (LottoNL-Jumbo) 8h13:15
2. Danny Van Poppel (Team Sky) +00:06
3. Nikias Arndt (Giant-Alpecin) +00:08
4. Caleb Ewan (Orica-GreenEdge) +00:10
5. Stijn Steels (Topsport Vlaanderen-Baloise) +00:10

Climber’s Classification
1. Richard Handley (One Pro Cycling) 6pts
2. Pete Williams (One Pro Cycling) 5pts
3. Jens Wallays (Topsport Vlaanderen-Baloise) 3pts

Points Classification
1. Dylan Groenewegen (LottoNL-Jumbo) 27pts
2. Danny Van Poppel (Team Sky) 21pts
3. Nikias Arndt (Giant-Alpecin) 18pts

Tour de Yorkshire: Settle

settle postcard

A year ago, Dutch team LottoNL-Jumbo were celebrating their first win of the season at the Tour de Yorkshire, courtesy of sprinter Moreno Hofland. This time around they already have a win in the bag, just the one though.

On Friday their 2016 tally was doubled as Dylan Groenewegen sprinted to victory in Settle. It was the 22-year-old’s second win of the season too, his first at the squad since transferring from Roompot-Oranje Peloton during the winter.

After his yellow-clad teammates had chased down a late move from the master of the discipline Stephen Cummings (Dimension Data), Groenewegen manoeuvred perfectly in the final metres to go round Giant-Alpecin’s Nikias Arndt to take a comfortable victory. Stage favourite, Orica-GreenEdge’s Caleb Ewan, was boxed in by Arndt, leaving him no room to fully contest the finish.

Groenewegen Yorkshire stage 1 2016 COR VOS

“When I started to sprint I knew that I was going to win,” said Groenewegen after the finish. “My teammates fulfilled their tasks perfectly and I didn’t have to fight for my position for one single moment.”

Groenewegen was firm about his chances at overall victory, saying that there is no chance the bonus seconds earned today would see him go for the win. “I’ll go for it tomorrow and then it’s for [team leaders] Steven Kruijswijk and Primož Roglič.”

Far from the mild and sunny weather that graced the first edition of the race last year, Friday’s weather was grim – with a strong headwind and driving rain battering the peloton for much of the stage.

The early breakaway was made up of six riders, with UK-based pros Pete Williams (One Pro Cycling), Sebastian Mora (Raleigh GAC), Graham Briggs (JLT Condor) and Matt Cronshaw (Madison Genesis) joined by one of the revelations of the spring classics, Nils Politt (Katusha) and Jens Wallays (Topsport Vlaanderen-Baloise).

Peloton Yorkshire stage 1 2016 TDY

Sky kept the group on a tight leash, doing much of the day’s work, though it would eventually amount to very little with Danny Van Poppel’s sixth place all they had to show for their efforts. Meanwhile, up front Williams was battling his way into the climber’s jersey, taking maximum points on the day’s only climb, the Côte de Greenhow Hill.

The break was finally brought back with 30km left to race, while Thomas Voeckler (Direct Énergie) and Anthony Turgis (Cofidis) seemed to signal their GC intentions as they fought over the bonus seconds available at the final intermediate sprint in the final action of the day before the sprint finish.

Stage result
1. Dylan Groenewegen (LottoNL-Jumbo) 5h09:11
2. Caleb Ewan (Orica-GreenEdge)
3. Nikias Arndt (Giant-Alpecin)
4. Thomas Boudat (Direct Énergie)
5. Danny van Poppel (Team Sky)
6. Floris Gerts (BMC)
7. Christopher Lawless(JLT Condor)
8. Dion Smith (One Pro Cycling)
9. Karol Domagalski (One Pro Cycling)
10. Bert Van Lerberghe (Topsport Vlaanderen-Baloise)

General Classification
1. Dylan Groenewegen (LottoNL-Jumbo) 5h09:01
2. Caleb Ewan (Orica-GreenEdge) +00:04
3. Nikias Arndt (Giant-Alpecin) +00:06
4. Anthony Turgis (Cofidis) +00:07
5. Thomas Voeckler (Direct Énergie) +00:08

Climber’s Classification
1. Pete Williams (One Pro Cycling) 5pts
2. Jens Wallays (Topsport Vlaanderen-Baloise) 3pts
3. Nils Politt (Katusha) 2pts

Points Classification
1. Dylan Groenewegen (LottoNL-Jumbo) 15pts
2. Caleb Ewan (Orica-GreenEdge) 12pts
3. Nikias Arndt (Giant-Alpecin) 9pts

The final weekend: a look back

The peloton on Regent Street, London (SweetSpot)
The peloton race up Regent Street, London (SweetSpot)

André Greipel (Lotto-Soudal) and Elia Viviani (Team Sky) shared the spoils on the final weekend of the 2015 Tour of Britain. Edvald Boasson Hagen (MTN-Qhubeka) successfully defended his yellow jersey to take his second overall win at the race – the first man to win two editions of the modern race.

Fakenham – Ipswich

The East Anglia stage saw Greipel take his sixteenth win of the season, his first at the Tour of Britain, in a photo finish. The German started his sprint early, holding off a resurgent Elia Viviani to just shade it on the line.

Earlier in the day the Brit trio of Alex Dowsett (Movistar), Gabriel Cullaigh (Great Britain) and Graham Briggs (JLT-Condor) were in the break, though with such a flat stage on the menu they were never going to make it to finish.

Greipel shades it in Fakenham (SweetSpot)
Greipel shades it in Fakenham (SweetSpot)

The trio were duly caught thanks mainly to the work of Lotto-Soudal, while a late bid for glory from Zdeněk Štybar also proved fruitless as the Belgian squad were determined to deliver the Gorilla to the win.

stage result
1 André Greipel (Ger) Lotto – Soudal 5:14:42
2 Elia Viviani (Ita) Team Sky
3 Sondre Holst Enger (Nor) IAM Cycling
4 Mark Renshaw (Aus) Etixx – Quick Step
5 Edvald Boasson Hagen (Nor) MTN – Qhubeka
6 Owain Doull (GBr) Team WIGGINS
7 Rasmus Guldhammer Pedersen (Den) Cult Energy Pro Cycling
8 Jonas Van Genechten (Bel) IAM Cycling
9 Dylan van Baarle (Ned) Team Cannondale – Garmin
10 Jens Debusschere (Bel) Lotto – Soudal

London

Elia Viviani triumphed on the final stage of the race, though he had to wait for race judges to confirm his win after Greipel, the first man over the line, was relegated due to irregular sprinting.

The big German moved across Viviani’s path as he stormed past, a move which saw the Sky rider protest and meant that Greipel would end up in 39th on the day.

“I had good speed in the legs after this really hard week,” said Viviani. “The guys have done amazing work for Wout [Poels] and myself this week. I’m disappointed because it would’ve been better to win without this, but we won in London and that’s the main thing.”

Greipel leads the peloton home in London (SweetSpot)
Greipel leads the peloton home in London (SweetSpot)

For the most part, the circuit race around Central London was a victory parade for Boasson Hagen, though the day did see Owain Doull move up onto the final podium thanks to bonus seconds claimed at the intermediate sprint.

It capped a strong race for the 22-year-old Welshman, who also took home the points jersey. One Pro Cycling, who are looking to move up to the ProContinental level for 2016, took the mountains and sprints jerseys thanks to a strong performance from Peter Williams.

The big plaudits, however, go to Boasson Hagen, who outperformed everybody’s expectations to take the overall win. His surprise performance on the summit finish of Hartside Fell will be seen as the defining moment of his second Tour of Britain victory.

The final podium (SweetSpot)
The final podium (SweetSpot)
stage result
1 Elia Viviani (Ita) Team Sky 1:50:16
2 Juan Jose Lobato Del Valle (Esp) Movistar Team
3 Matteo Trentin (Ita) Etixx – Quick Step
4 Edvald Boasson Hagen (Nor) MTN – Qhubeka
5 Jens Debusschere (Bel) Lotto – Soudal
6 Sondre Holst Enger (Nor) IAM Cycling
7 Mark Renshaw (Aus) Etixx – Quick Step
8 Graham Briggs (GBr) JLT Condor
9 Ruben Zepuntke (Ger) Team Cannondale – Garmin
10 Owain Doull (GBr) Team WIGGINS
general classification
1 Edvald Boasson Hagen (Nor) MTN – Qhubeka 34:52:52  
2 Wouter Poels (Ned) Team Sky 0:00:13  
3 Owain Doull (GBr) Team WIGGINS 0:00:42  
4 Rasmus Guldhammer Pedersen (Den) Cult Energy Pro Cycling 0:00:43  
5 Zdenek _tybar (Cze) Etixx – Quick Step 0:00:51  
6 Rubén Fernandez Andujar (Esp) Movistar Team    
7 Steven Kruijswijk (Ned) Team LottoNL-Jumbo    
8 Dylan van Baarle (Ned) Team Cannondale – Garmin 0:00:53  
9 Chris Anker Sørensen (Den) Tinkoff – Saxo 0:00:59  
10 Xandro Meurisse (Bel) An Post – Chainreaction 0:01:02
mountains classification
1 Peter Williams (GBr) One Pro Cycling 36  pts
2 Thomas Stewart (GBr) Madison Genesis 34  
3 Mark McNally (GBr) Madison Genesis 29  
points classification
1 Owain Doull (GBr) Team Wiggins 78  pts
2 Edvald Boasson Hagen (Nor) MTN – Qhubeka 77  
3 Jens Debusschere (Bel) Lotto – Soudal 59  

 

sprints classification
1 Peter Williams (GBr) One Pro Cycling 18  pts
2 Conor Dunne (Irl) An Post – Chainreaction 11  
3 Danilo Wyss (Sui) BMC Racing Team 10  

Stoke-on-Trent – Nottingham: a look back

Boasson Hagen extends his lead (SweetSpot)
Boasson Hagen extends his lead (SweetSpot)

Race leader Edvald Boasson Hagen took charge of the Tour of Britain today, chasing the breakaway alone and asserting his authority on the race. Etixx-QuickStep’s Matteo Trentin may have taken the win on the day but the Norwegian stretched his lead out to thirteen seconds, a gap which looks to be unassailable over the final two – largely flat – days.

The MTN-Qhubeka man was more concerned with extending his lead than taking the stage, leading out Trentin, who had been in the break of the day, as he looked to maximise his advantage.

“When Edvald arrived we had a good gap but everyone was on the limit because that was probably the hardest race we’d ever done,” said Trentin. “It was full gas from the start. I sat for a moment in his wheel and took a chance to breathe for the first time in 100 kilometre. Then I just jumped past him for the win.”

On paper the stage was one of the hardest of the race, and so it proved on the road, with the peloton fracturing early on as Boasson Hagen sprinted for bonus seconds.

The peloton on the road to Nottingham (SweetSpot)
The peloton on the road to Nottingham (SweetSpot)

A strong group containing Trentin, Stefan Küng (BMC), Jens Debuscherre (Lotto-Soudal), Gorka Izagirre (Movistar), Sebastian Langeveld (Cannondale-Garmin) and Bram Tankink (LottoNL-Jumbo) made up the breakaway, though by the time they reached the outskirts of Nottingham they were already attacking each other.

Back in the peloton, Sky were doing much of the work, though dislodging the yellow jersey proved to be an impossibility. With the men in black worn out after a day of work, Poels was isolated in the final kilometres, and that was Boasson Hagen’s time to strike, attacking with three kilometres to go.

Trentin leads  the yellow jersey home (SweetSpot)
Trentin leads the yellow jersey home (SweetSpot)

 

stage result
1 Matteo Trentin (Ita) Etixx – Quick Step 4:45:27
2 Edvald Boasson Hagen (Nor) MTN – Qhubeka
3 Owain Doull (GBr) Team WIGGINS 0:00:04
4 Zdenek Stybar (Cze) Etixx – Quick Step
5 Jens Debusschere (Bel) Lotto – Soudal
6 Alberto Bettiol (Ita) Team Cannondale – Garmin
7 Alex Peters (GBr) Great Britain
8 Dylan Teuns (Bel) BMC Racing Team
9 Xandro Meurisse (Bel) An Post – Chainreaction
10 Wouter Poels (Ned) Team Sky
11 Rasmus Guldhammer Pedersen (Den) Cult Energy Pro Cycling
12 Rubén Fernandez Andujar (Esp) Movistar Team
13 Steven Kruijswijk (Ned) Team LottoNL-Jumbo
14 Taylor Phinney (USA) BMC Racing Team
15 Tao Geoghegan Hart (GBr) Great Britain
16 Stef Clement (Ned) IAM Cycling
17 Chris Anker Sørensen (Den) Tinkoff – Saxo
18 Dylan van Baarle (Ned) Team Cannondale – Garmin
19 Stefan Denifl (Aut) IAM Cycling
20 Robert Kiserlovski (Cro) Tinkoff – Saxo
general classification
1 Edvald Boasson Hagen (Nor) MTN – Qhubeka 27:47:54
2 Wouter Poels (Ned) Team Sky 0:00:13
3 Rasmus Guldhammer Pedersen (Den) Cult Energy Pro Cycling 0:00:43
4 Owain Doull (GBr) Team WIGGINS 0:00:44
5 Dylan Teuns (Bel) BMC Racing Team 0:00:51
6 Zdenek Stybar (Cze) Etixx – Quick Step
7 Rubén Fernandez Andujar (Esp) Movistar Team
8 Steven Kruijswijk (Ned) Team LottoNL-Jumbo
9 Xandro Meurisse (Bel) An Post – Chainreaction
10 Chris Anker Sørensen (Den) Tinkoff – Saxo
mountains classification
1 Peter Williams (GBr) One Pro Cycling 32  pts
2 Mark McNally (GBr) Madison Genesis 29
3 Thomas Stewart (GBr) Madison Genesis 29
POINTS CLASSIFICATION
1 Owain Doull (GBr) Team WIGGINS 62  pts
2 Edvald Boasson Hagen (Nor) MTN – Qhubeka 54
3 Jens Debusschere (Bel) Lotto – Soudal 42
sprints classification
1 Peter Williams (GBr) One Pro Cycling 18  pts
2 Conor Dunne (Irl) An Post – Chainreaction 11
3 Pim Ligthart (Ned) Lotto – Soudal 8

Prudhoe – Hartside Fell: a look back

Wout Poels crept past Edvald Boasson Hagen within metres of the line (Sweetspot)
Wout Poels crept past Edvald Boasson Hagen within metres of the line (Sweetspot)

Wout Poels (Team Sky) took the win on the hardest stage of the Tour of Britain, with a last-gasp push to the line on Hartside Fell.

MTN-Qhubeka’s Edvald Boasson Hagen looked set to take a surprise victory, with few expecting the sprinter to be in contention on the race’s only summit finish. His late attack was thwarted by Poels, with the Dutchman’s second wind pushing him past with metres to spare.

“It’s always nice to win because I don’t win a lot of races,” Poels said. “It was pretty close in the final 500 metres. I thought that I would finish second but then Boasson Hagen slowed down a bit and I knew that I had to take that chance for the win.”

The Cumbrian terrain was lumpy all day, and One Pro Cycling’s Peter Williams took full advantage. The Lancastrian was out in the break for the third time in five days, with his efforts rewarded with both the mountain and sprint jerseys.

Breakmate and last year’s KOM winner Mark McNally (Madison-Genesis) beat Williams to the top of each hill, meaning there should be a grand battle for the polka-dot jersey over the coming days.

The break didn’t make it to the final climb though, as the combined work of MTN-Qhubeka, Team Sky and Tinkoff-Saxo ensured that the day would be decided by the GC men.

The peloton on the road to Hartside Fell (Sweetspot)
The peloton on the road to Hartside Fell (Sweetspot)

Race leader Juan José Lobato was one of the first to drop from the peloton on the climb, and it wasn’t long before the first attacks came. Cannondale-Garmin’s Ruben Zepuntke tried to break free with 7km remaining, but his move was soon usurped by a more committed effort from Peter Kennaugh (Team Sky) and Chris Anker Sørensen (Tinkoff-Saxo).

LottoNL-Jumbo’s Steven Kruijswijk and Poels were next to go, in a move that saw what was remaining of the peloton fall apart. With 3km to go it looked as though the Dutch duo would be contesting the finish, but Boasson Hagen had other ideas.

As Great Britain’s Tao Geoghegan Hart and Alex Peters touched wheels and fell out of contention in the group, the Norwegian rode across to Poels and Kruijswijk. The Sky man tried again and again to get away, but the strong headwind in the final kilometres meant that he made no progress.

The final kilometre loomed as Boasson Hagen made his final bid for victory, powering away from the small group of leaders. He made it a further 900 metres in the lead before he was caught, but is still in yellow tonight, his lead over Poels a miniscule second.

It’s the third win of the race for Sky, with the British team sharing every stage with Etixx-QuickStep thus far. With the final weekend made up of two sprint stages, tomorrow’s stage from Stoke-on-Trent to Nottingham looks to be the only chance for Poels to overhaul Boasson Hagen for the overall win.

Boasson Hagen lost out on the day but took the yellow jersey (Sweetspot)
Boasson Hagen lost out on the day but took the yellow jersey (Sweetspot)

 

stage result
1 Wout Poels (Ned) Team Sky 4:12:22
2 Edvald Boasson Hagen (Nor) MTN – Qhubeka 0:00:02
3 Benat Intxausti Elorriaga (Esp) Movistar Team 0:00:17
4 Zdenek Stybar (Cze) Etixx – Quick Step 0:00:18
5 Rasmus Guldhammer Pedersen (Den) Cult Energy Pro Cycling
6 Steven Kruijswijk (Ned) Team LottoNL-Jumbo
7 Xandro Meurisse (Bel) An Post – Chainreaction
8 Chris Anker Sørensen (Den) Tinkoff – Saxo
9 Rubén Fernandez Andujar (Esp) Movistar Team
10 Dylan Teuns (Bel) BMC Racing Team
11 Owain Doull (GBr) Team WIGGINS 0:00:25
12 Alex Peters (GBr) Great Britain
13 Rasmus Christian Quaade (Den) Cult Energy Pro Cycling 0:00:31
14 Graham Briggs (GBr) JLT Condor
15 Gorka Izaguirre Insausti (Esp) Movistar Team
16 Dylan van Baarle (Ned) Team Cannondale – Garmin 0:00:35
17 Robert Kiserlovski (Cro) Tinkoff – Saxo
18 Alberto Bettiol (Ita) Team Cannondale – Garmin
19 Peter Kennaugh (GBr) Team Sky 0:01:00
20 Jens Debusschere (Bel) Lotto – Soudal
general classification
1 Edvald Boasson Hagen (Nor) MTN – Qhubeka 23:02:36
2 Wouter Poels (Ned) Team Sky 0:00:01
3 Rasmus Guldhammer Pedersen (Den) Cult Energy Pro Cycling 0:00:30
4 Benat Intxausti Elorriaga (Esp) Movistar Team 0:00:33
5 Owain Doull (GBr) Team WIGGINS 0:00:37
6 Dylan Teuns (Bel) BMC Racing Team 0:00:38
7 Zdenek Stybar (Cze) Etixx – Quick Step
8 Rubén Fernandez Andujar (Esp) Movistar Team
9 Steven Kruijswijk (Ned) Team LottoNL-Jumbo
10 Chris Anker Sørensen (Den) Tinkoff – Saxo
mountains classification
1 Peter Williams (GBr) One Pro Cycling 32  pts
2 Mark McNally (GBr) Madison Genesis 29
3 Thomas Stewart (GBr) Madison Genesis 29
points classification
1 Owain Doull (GBr) Team WIGGINS 49  pts
2 Edvald Boasson Hagen (Nor) MTN – Qhubeka 40
3 Juan Jose Lobato Del Valle (Esp) Movistar Team 40
sprints classification
1 Peter Williams (GBr) One Pro Cycling 18  pts
2 Conor Dunne (Irl) An Post – Chainreaction 11
3 Pim Ligthart (Ned) Lotto – Soudal 8

Edinburgh – Blyth: a look back

Etixx-QuickStep's new sprint star Gaviria (Sweetspot)
Etixx-QuickStep’s new sprint star Gaviria (Sweetspot)

Etixx-QuickStep’s stagiaire Fernando Gaviria made it two wins from four stages for the Belgian team, showing a great sense of timing to overhaul stage favourite André Greipel on a damp day in Blyth.

It was the Colombian’s fifth win of the season, the third since joining Etixx-QuickStep. Another two came at January’s Tour de San Luis, beating the man who helped him win today, Mark Cavendish.

“Cav put me into position ahead of him,” he said. “And when the sprint began I simply went for it and gave everything I had to win.”

The manner of Gaviria’s victory was impressive, as he came from a long way back in the sprint. Team Sky and Lotto-Soudal had done the lion’s share of the work in the final ten kilometres, with Etixx-QuickStep less prominent on the run-in as they had had Matteo Trentin in the main break of the day.

BMC's Danilo Wyss leads the breakaway (Sweetspot)
BMC’s Danilo Wyss leads the breakaway (Sweetspot)

Four-time Tour de France stage winner André Greipel (Lotto-Soudal) was the first to hit the front, and it looked as though Edvald Boasson Hagen (MTN-Qhubeka) would be his only competition.

Gaviria had other ideas though, and hopped into Boasson Hagen’s slipstream before speeding past on the outside to ease to victory.

After the stage, Etixx-QuickStep DS Brian Holm had high praise for his team’s new sprint star. “In the Czech Tour he was great. He was like Cav eight years ago,” he said. “He also has a twist of Sagan inside him. He’s fast, fearless and can climb a bit too.”


 

stage result
1 Fernando Gaviria Rendon (Col) Etixx – Quick Step 5:13:08
2 André Greipel (Ger) Lotto – Soudal
3 Edvald Boasson Hagen (Nor) MTN – Qhubeka
4 Owain Doull (GBr) Team WIGGINS
5 Jens Debusschere (Bel) Lotto – Soudal
6 Jonas Van Genechten (Bel) IAM Cycling
7 Elia Viviani (Ita) Team Sky
8 Gerald Ciolek (Ger) MTN – Qhubeka
9 Floris Gerts (Ned) BMC Racing Team
10 Graham Briggs (GBr) JLT Condor
general classification
1 Juan Jose Lobato Del Valle (Esp) Movistar Team 18:50:12
2 Edvald Boasson Hagen (Nor) MTN – Qhubeka 0:00:06
3 Floris Gerts (Ned) BMC Racing Team 0:00:12
4 Wouter Poels (Ned) Team Sky 0:00:13
5 Dylan van Baarle (Ned) Team Cannondale – Garmin
mountains classification
1 Thomas Stewart (GBr) Madison Genesis 25  pts
2 Ian Bibby (GBr) NFTO 23
3 Kristian House (GBr) JLT Condor 20
points classification
1 Owain Doull (GBr) Team WIGGINS 44  pts
2 Juan Jose Lobato Del Valle (Esp) Movistar Team 40
3 Elia Viviani (Ita) Team Sky 39
sprints classification
1 Peter Williams (GBr) One Pro Cycling 9  pts
2 Pim Ligthart (Ned) Lotto – Soudal 8
3 Aidis Kruopis (Ltu) An Post – Chainreaction 8

Cockermouth – Kelso: a look back

tob15 s3 sweetspot (2) viviani
Viviani takes win number two (Sweetspot)

Elia Viviani of Team Sky took his second victory in three days at Kelso in the Scottish Borderlands, beating Movistar’s Juan José Lobato to the line in the shadow of Floors Castle. The win is Sky’s 200th victory since the inception of the team back in 2010.

Despite missing out on the stage win, Lobato took over the race lead after Etixx-QuickStep’s Petr Vakoč crashed just outside the 3km to go mark, only a day after taking over the yellow jersey.

The Czech rider looked to be nursing an injury to his left hand as he rolled in ten minutes after Viviani, with teammate Fernando Gaviria at his side. At the time of publication it is unknown whether Vakoč will continue tomorrow.

A six-man break went away within the first 20km, with Tyler Farrar (MTN-Qhubeka), Matt Cronshaw (Madison-Genesis), Marcin Białobłocki (One Pro Cycling), Aidis Kruopis (An Post-ChainReaction), Johnny McEvoy (NFTO) managing to get away.

The peloton on the road to Kelso (Sweetspot)
The peloton on the road to Kelso (Sweetspot)
Today's finish (Sweetspot)
Today’s finish (Sweetspot)

For the most part it was a rather standard day of racing, though Tyler Farrar sprinting for mountain points raised a few eyebrows. Six minutes was the break’s maximum lead, before the sprinter’s teams started their work at the front of the peloton.

On the descent of Wilton Hill, the second category climb with 40km remaining, the lead group was slimmed down to three. Farrar, Cronshaw and Białobłocki were the lucky trio, pushing onwards to the finish.

It wasn’t to be for the break though. Their lead started to evaporate as Lotto-Soudal and Cannondale-Garmin took on the majority of the pace-setting on the run-in to the finish of the 216km stage. With 3km to go, they were caught and it would come down to a fight between the fastmen.

André Greipel was surprisingly leading out for teammate Jens Debusschere but the Belgian was swamped in the final metres, as IAM’s Sondre Holst Enger sped past with Viviani on his wheel. The Italian timed his sprint to perfection, easing over the line ahead of Lobato and Matteo Trentin (Etixx-QuickStep).

Farrar wins the combativity award (Sweetspot)
Farrar wins the combativity award (Sweetspot)

stage result
1 Elia Viviani (Ita) Team Sky 5:08:18
2 Juan Jose Lobato Del Valle (Esp) Movistar Team
3 Matteo Trentin (Ita) Etixx – Quick Step
4 Sondre Holst Enger (Nor) IAM Cycling
5 Jens Debusschere (Bel) Lotto – Soudal
6 Owain Doull (GBr) Team WIGGINS
7 Alberto Bettiol (Ita) Team Cannondale – Garmin
8 Graham Briggs (GBr) JLT Condor
9 Alex Peters (GBr) Great Britain
10 Wouter Poels (Ned) Team Sky
general classification
1 Juan Jose Lobato Del Valle (Esp) Movistar Team 13:37:04
2 Edvald Boasson Hagen (Nor) MTN – Qhubeka 0:00:10
3 Floris Gerts (Ned) BMC Racing Team 0:00:12
4 Wouter Poels (Ned) Team Sky 0:00:13
5 Dylan van Baarle (Ned) Team Cannondale – Garmin
MOUNTAIN CLASSIFICATION
1 Thomas Stewart (GBr) Madison Genesis 25  pts
2 Ian Bibby (GBr) NFTO 23
3 Kristian House (GBr) JLT Condor 20
POINTS CLASSIFICATION
1 Juan Jose Lobato Del Valle (Esp) Movistar Team 39  pts
2 Owain Doull (GBr) Team WIGGINS 32
3 Elia Viviani (Ita) Team Sky 30

 

SPRINT CLASSIFICATION
1 Peter Williams (GBr) One Pro Cycling 9  pts
2 Pim Ligthart (Ned) Lotto – Soudal 8
3 Aidis Kruopis (Ltu) An Post – Chainreaction 8

 

Clitheroe – Colne: a look back

tob15 s2 sweetspot (1) vakoc
Vakoč takes a solo victory (Sweetspot)

Etixx-QuickStep’s Petr Vakoč took over the lead of the Tour of Britain after a stunning solo victory on the second stage of the race into Colne. The Czech national champion attacked his breakmates with 19km to go, maintaining a small gap over the rampaging peloton all the way to the line.

The World University Champion and second-year pro said after the stage that he didn’t expect the win.

“Normally stages with such a hard start don’t do me any good but I started with really good feelings today,” he said. “When I went I thought somebody would go with me, but it was just me so I pushed as hard as I could.”

“The finish was pretty tough but I still had some energy left. At the end I was imagining that I was doing a bunch sprint,” he joked. “It was a beautiful victory.”

Earlier in the day, Peter Williams (One Pro Cycling) was on the attack once again, keen to secure another combativity awards and another block of cheese. Movistar’s Alex Dowsett, who led the race last year, joined Williams in an attempt to replicate his 2014 success.

Williams earned more cheese for the One Pro Cycling fridge (Sweetspot)
Williams earned more cheese for the One Pro Cycling fridge (Sweetspot)

Dowsett was, however, forced to drop back as the Team Sky-led peloton looked loath to let him go up the road.

The race really got going on the second category climb of Bleara Moor, 100km into the 159km stage. A group of forty riders split away from the main peloton over the top as Williams was caught, with race leader Elia Viviani falling back.

Vakoč attacked on the descent, along with BMC’s Danilo Wyss and Great Britain’s Alex Peters, and the trio were soon joined by Wout Poels (Sky), Serge Pauwels (MTN-Qhubeka), Pim Ligthart (Lotto-Soudal), Rubén Fernández (Movistar) and Alberto Bettiol (Cannondale-Garmin).

The lead group never got a gap of more than fifty seconds, but with no race radios there was always a chance they would stay away.

With Tinkoff-Saxo and Lotto-Soudal leading the chase, the 23-year-old seized his moment, holding on to win by seven seconds before collapsing, exhausted, metres after the line.

Movistar’s Juan José Lobato led the peloton home, and perhaps he would’ve triumphed had the Spanish squad put in the work. Edvald Boasson Hagen of MTN-Qhubeka rounded off the podium.

Vakoč after the finish (inthedrops)
Vakoč after the finish (inthedrops)

stage result
1 Petr Vakoc (Cze) Etixx – Quick Step 4:02:22
2 Juan Jose Lobato Del Valle (Esp) Movistar Team 0:00:07
3 Edvald Boasson Hagen (Nor) MTN – Qhubeka 0:00:09
4 Rasmus Guldhammer Pedersen (Den) Cult Energy Pro Cycling
5 Matteo Trentin (Ita) Etixx – Quick Step
6 Owain Doull (GBr) Team WIGGINS
7 Jens Debusschere (Bel) Lotto – Soudal
8 Dylan Teuns (Bel) BMC Racing Team
9 Gorka Izaguirre Insausti (Esp) Movistar Team
10 Javier Mejias Leal (Esp) Team Novo Nordisk
general classification
1 Petr Vakoc (Cze) Etixx – Quick Step 8:28:41
2 Juan Jose Lobato Del Valle (Esp) Movistar Team 0:00:11
3 Edvald Boasson Hagen (Nor) MTN – Qhubeka 0:00:15
4 Floris Gerts (Ned) BMC Racing Team 0:00:17
5 Wouter Poels (Ned) Team Sky 0:00:18

 

mountains classification
1 Thomas Stewart (GBr) Madison Genesis 23  pts
2 Ian Bibby (GBr) NFTO 20
3 Kristian House (GBr) JLT Condor 20
points classification
1 Juan Jose Lobato Del Valle (Esp) Movistar Team 25  pts
2 Owain Doull (GBr) Team WIGGINS 22
3 Petr Vakoc (Cze) Etixx – Quick Step 15
sprint classification
1 Peter Williams (GBr) One Pro Cycling 9  pts
2 Pim Ligthart (Ned) Lotto – Soudal 8
3 Conor Dunne (Irl) An Post – Chainreaction 7

Beaumaris – Wrexham: a look back

tob15 s1 sweetspot (2)

Team Sky’s Elia Viviani took the opening stage of the 2015 Tour of Britain, sprinting to victory in one of the closest finishes the race has ever seen. Home favourite Mark Cavendish of Etixx-QuickStep was the runner-up, losing out in the photo finish.

“With 100m to go I thought it was too late,” said Viviani. “I thought Cav would start earlier but then he went to the middle of the road and I saw a small space and I thought ‘ok, I’ll go that way and we will see’.”

“It took a few metres after the line to realise I had won. I only understood that I had when I saw Cav say ‘Oh no’. We were close, eh?”

tob15 s1 sweetspot (3) viviani

The win comes as a much-needed boost for the Italian, who admitted that he had been disappointed by his results in the Vattenfall Cyclassics and the GP Plouay late last month.

“I didn’t get the result I wanted there, but I’m really happy with this. It’s a good test for my condition, and good for the Worlds too because that’s a big focus for the end of my season.”

Viviani benefitted from a day’s worth of work from his team, with Brit Andy Fenn notably putting in big stints at the front of the peloton.

“He did great work and has really good condition,” said Viviani. “The six-man teams are strange for us, and with Wout Poels and Pete Kennaugh looking to GC, we needed to use Ben Swift and Andy for the sprint today.”

Earlier in the day a four-man break was established almost as soon as the peloton left the town of Beaumaris, with Peter Williams (One Pro Cycling), Conor Dunne (An Post-Chainreaction), Tom Stewart (Madison-Genesis) and Kristian House (JLT-Condor) out front for most of the day’s 178km.

tob15 s1 sweetspot (6)

House’s efforts saw him take the first Skoda King of the Mountains jersey of the race with a late attack over the final climb of the day at Bwlch. Dunne leads the Yodel Sprint classification.

With the might of Etixx-QuickStep and Sky riding at the front of the peloton for much of the day, there was no chance that the escapees would be allowed to contest the finish among themselves.

That didn’t stop House trying though, and his repeated attacks saw him secure a lump of local cheese and the Rouleur Combativity Award. Nevertheless, he and his breakmates were brought back with 1.5km to go.

The technical final kilometres saw Cavendish’s Etixx-QuickStep train then came to the fore, with Colombian Fernando Gaviria and Mark Renshaw leading out the Manxman, but in the end it was to no avail. Lotto-Soudal’s Andre Greipel rounded out the podium, while Team Wiggins’ Owain Doull put in a strong showing to finish fourth.

tob15 s1 sweetspot (5)

All photos provided by SweetSpot.


stage result
1 Elia Viviani (Ita) Team Sky 4:26:29
2 Mark Cavendish (GBr) Etixx – Quick-Step
3 André Greipel (Ger) Lotto Soudal
4 Owain Doull (GBr) Team Wiggins
5 Juan Jose Lobato Del Valle (Spa) Movistar Team
6 Pim Ligthart (Ned) Lotto Soudal
7 Mark Renshaw (Aus) Etixx – Quick-Step
8 Tyler Farrar (USA) MTN – Qhubeka
9 Alberto Bettiol (Ita) Cannondale-Garmin Pro Cycling Team
10 Graham Briggs (GBr) JLT Condor
general classification
1 Elia Viviani (Ita) Team Sky 4:26:19
2 Mark Cavendish (GBr) Etixx Quick Step 0:00:04
3 Andre Greipel (Ger) Lotto Soudal 0:00:06
4 Owain Doull (GBr) Team Wiggins 0:00:10
5 Juan José Lobato (Spa) Movistar Team
KING OF THE MOUNTAINS
1 Kristian House (GBr) JLT-Condor 20
2 Thomas Stewart (GBr) Madison-Genesis 19
3 Peter Williams (GBr) One Pro Cycling 17
sprint classification
1 Conor Dunne (Irl) An Post-ChainReaction 7
2 Peter Williams (GBr) One Pro Cycling 6
3 Kristian House (GBr) JLT-Condor 3
points classification
1 Elia Viviani (Ita) Team Sky 15
2 Mark Cavendish (GBr) Etixx Quick Step 14
3 Andre Greipel (Ger) Lotto Soudal 13

 

Good Tour, Bad Tour

Yesterday saw the end of a great edition of the Tour of Britain. There were six different leaders in eight days as the six-man teams struggled to control the peloton on the rugged terrain that defined almost every single stage.

The race was also notable for the success of young riders. Dylan Van Baarle, Michał Kwiatkowski, Matthias Brändle, Edoardo Zardini, Sebastian Lander and Dylan Teuns were all prominent during the week. The one thing they have in common? They’re all under 25.

The move up to 2.HC status meant more WorldTour teams and bigger names on the startlist, which made it a difficult week for the British Continental teams. Visibility in breakaways was just about the limit of their achievements, though Madison-Genesis managed a second place finish on one stage.

Scroll to the bottom for quick team ratings.

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anpost

An Post-ChainReaction

Mark McNally was one of the men of the Tour for the Belgo-Irish squad. He was in the break for the first three days of the race, racking up the mountain points that would see him take the mountain classification. Otherwise the team had a quiet race, with Shane Archbold taking second place from the breakaway in Exeter.

★★★★

.

bardiani

Bardiani-CSF

The Italians brought a talented group of riders to these shores, and an attacking display was expected from them. After Edoardo Zardini found himself in yellow on The Tumble the squad were more conservative as they raced to conserve his place rather than going for additional wins. In the end he had a strong time trial, but it wasn’t enough to stop him slipping off the podium to fourth place overall.

Edoardo Zardini wins the Queen stage on The Tumble (SweetSpot)
Edoardo Zardini wins the Queen stage on The Tumble (SweetSpot)

Neo-pro Nicola Ruffoni was a bright spot. The 23 year-old Bresciani showed his talent in the sprints, taking second place on the opening day and running Kittel and Cavendish close in London.

★★★★

.

belkin

Belkin

The Dutch squad were low on star power after Lars Boom pulled out before the race started. They were by far the least successful of the WorldTour teams, with their only memorable moment being Maarten Wynants time in the breakaway on stage 5.

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bmc

BMC

Stagiaire Dylan Teuns’ second race with the team was even more successful than the Tour of Utah where he won the youth classification. The Belgian was right up there with the leaders on some of the toughest stages and he was in contention for the podium until 50th place in the time trial ended his hopes. Still, tenth is a good result for the 22 year-old.

Dane Sebastian Lander took home the sprint jersey after featuring in the break on the road to Bristol, while 20 year-old Rick Zabel mixed it up in the sprints, grabbing five top-ten finishes.

★★★

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garmin

Garmin-Sharp

Another neo-pro who enjoyed his time in Britain was Dylan Van Baarle. He leapt from 14th to first after getting in the break on stage 7 to Brighton. Many wrote him off as likely to lose his lead in the London time trial but he held on to keep the yellow jersey.

Dylan Van Baarle was the surprise winner (SweetSpot)
Dylan Van Baarle was the surprise winner (SweetSpot)

The win was a surprise to everyone, including the man himself, who said “I was expecting the top ten and now we are here eh?” Tactically a perfect race from Wegelius & co.

★★★★★

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giant

Giant-Shimano

As if often the case with the Dutch team, they did what they came to do. Marcel Kittel wins bookended the race, with his leadout train delivering him at just the right time on each occasion. One dark spot came in Bristol, where dithering in the break cost Albert Timmer the win as Michał Kwiatkowski sprinter past in the dying metres.

★★★★

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giordana

Giordana

They were more noticeable than some but still came away empty handed. Marcin Białobłocki and Rob Partridge featured in breaks for the Continental squad.

★★

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britain

Great Britain

The British selection was again full of young talents, the brightest of which being Tao Geoghegan Hart of the Bissell Development Team. His most notable moment may have been his violent crash in Brighton, but the 19 year-old finished 15th overall, which is a great result in such a tough race. The two Chrises – Lawless and Latham – got away in a couple of breaks too.

★★★

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iam

IAM

Matthias Brändle was one of the stars of the race, picking up two stages in a row from the break. Week-long stage races are on his radar for the future, saying that “I think that the one week races are good for me. If I rode for the general I could’ve got top 10.”

One of the men of the Tour, Matthias Brändle (SweetSpot)
One of the men of the Tour, Matthias Brändle (SweetSpot)

Otherwise, Sylvain Chavanel ended up in seventh place but wasn’t particularly visible during the course of the race. He had a strong finish with a second place in the final time trial though.

★★★★

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madison

Madison-Genesis

Roger Hammond’s men had a pretty good race as Ian Bibby, Liam Holohan and Tom Stewart all showed themselves in breakaways. Stewart’s third place in Hemel Hempstead was the highlight but the gap between the WorldTour and Continental levels showed in the final sprint. Hammond himself was prominent on the day, helping breakmate Alex Dowsett in the final kilometres.

★★★

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movistar

Movistar

They came with a stacked team and most would’ve expected a better showing from their climbers. Alex Dowsett was their star, taking the yellow jersey from the break and valiantly defending it the next day. He won the overall combativity prize and finished in eighth place while Ion Izagirre was sixth.

★★★

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mtn

MTN-Qhubeka

The African squad were newcomers to the race but left without making much of an impression. Andreas Stauff was out in the break on stages 5 and 8b though.

★★

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netapp

NetApp-Endura

With team leader Leopold König finishing seventh place in the Tour de France, it looked like a challenge for the overall win was on the cards. An illness lingering from the US Pro Cycling Challenge hindered his progress though, and he finished 34th overall. Teammate and countryman Jan Bárta had a good ride to end up ninth overall.

★★

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nfto

NFTO

Stage 1 was the high point for NFTO, as GreenEdge-bound Adam Blythe had a late attack while Jon Mould featured in the break earlier in the day.

★★

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novo

Novo Nordisk

The American team ride to promote diabetes awareness and they brought their message to new shores with their first trip to Britain. They were aggressive on several stages but couldn’t get away.

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opqs

Omega Pharma-QuickStep

Not quite a perfect race, but almost. Michał Kwiatkowski was the pre-race favourite and was ten seconds away from overhauling Dylan Van Baarle on the final day. With six-man teams at the race it proved too tough for the team to control breakaways and the Pole ended up in second place.

Kwiatowski won in Bristol (SweetSpot)
Kwiatowski won in Bristol (SweetSpot)

Kwiatkowski came away with the points jersey and a stage win, while Mark Renshaw was victorious in Llandudno and Julian Vermote won from the break in Brighton. Mark Cavendish was inches away from beating Marcel Kittel in London.

★★★★★

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raleigh

Raleigh

Another Continental team with not much to show for their efforts. I can’t remember any of their riders making a breakaway.

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rapha

Rapha Condor JLT

More or less the same story here too. Richard Handley was out front in Liverpool and Richard Handley attacked in Bristol.

★★

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sky

Sky

Bradley Wiggins led the big-budget British squad in front of fevered home crowds. He was in trouble on The Tumble, having to be paced back by teammate David Lopez and he lacked the explosiveness to attack on some of the hilly finishes.

Brad Wiggins en route to victory (SweetSpot)
Brad Wiggins en route to victory in the TT (SweetSpot)

A brilliant showing in the time trial got him the win and moved him up onto the podium, rendering Sky’s Tour a success. Tactically they could’ve done more on the hilly stages.

★★★

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tinkoff

Tinkoff-Saxo

Irishman Nicolas Roche was the quieter of Tinkoff-Saxo’s three lieutenants at the Tour this year but got the chance to lead here. He went for glory on The Tumble but was overpowered by Edoardo Zardini.More attacks followed later in the race but non stuck and he slipped to fifth overall in the time trial.

★★★

.

★★★★★
Garmin-Sharp, Omega Pharma-QuickStep

★★★★
Giant-Shimano, IAM, Bardiani-CSF, Sky

★★★
Movistar, BMC, Tinkoff-Saxo, Great Britain

★★
NetApp-Endura,  MTN-Qhubeka, NFTO, Rapha Condor, Giordana


Belkin, Novo Nordisk, Raleigh