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A Deceuninck-QuickStep double victory: Daily News

Hello CyclingTips readers,

Today there was racing happening all over Europe with Tirreno-Adriatico in Italy, Paris-Nice in France, and the Healthy Ageing Tour in the Netherlands.

Winds impacted the second stage time trial in Holland, so the women ditched their time trial bikes and took on the out-and-back course Merckx-style. In Paris-Nice, wind also played a role in the race, slowing the peloton to a crawl.

The final 35 km of Tirreno-Adriatico were the most exciting kilometres of the day, with a few interesting moves from some of the top riders in cycling right now.

Read on for more from the world of cycling.

Abby Mickey
Associate Editor

What’s News?

Julian Alaphilippe wins Tirreno-Adriatico stage 2

Julian Alaphilippe took stage honors in Chiusdino on stage 2 of Tirreno-Adriatico, outsprinting Mathieu van der Poel and Wout van Aert to take the victory. Van Aert holds on to his overall lead by only four seconds ahead of a long stage 3.

It was a relatively flat start to stage 2. A break of six got away in the opening kilometres, at one point leading the race by five minutes. Their advantage dropped significantly as the peloton charged toward the tail end of the course, where a series of small climbs would make the racing more interesting.

The leaders were swallowed by the peloton with 35 km to go and soon afterwards Egan Bernal attacked. The 2019 Tour de France champion went clear of the peloton with Kasper Asgreen and Jasper De Buyst in toe. The three did not stay away long, with a group of four attempting to bridge and bringing the peloton with them.

Simon Yates, Mikel Landa, João Almeida, and Pavel Sivakov were the next group to have a go off the front. There gap never increased over 30 seconds, but the move caused panic in the peloton as UAE-Team Emirates and Jumbo-Visma tried to organize and chase the four down.

Yates was the first to be distanced inside the final 2 km and in the final kilometre, Almeida dropped Landa and Sivakov. It looked promising for Almeida in the final 700 meters, but the peloton had reached maximum speed behind him.

Alaphilippe sprinted around his teammate in the final 50 meters, with Van der Poel and Van Aert on either side of the Frenchman.

Top 10, Stage 2

  1. ALAPHILIPPE Julian (Deceuninck – QuickStep) 5:01:32
  2. VAN DER POEL Mathieu (Alpecin – Fenix) st
  3. VAN AERT Wout (Team Jumbo – Visma) st
  4. POGACAR Tadej (UAE – Team Emirates) st
  5. ARANBURU Alex (Astana – Premier Tech) st
  6. STANNARD Robert (Team BikeExchange) st
  7. ALMEIDA João (Deceuninck – QuickStep) st
  8. VAN AVERMAET Greg (AG2R Citroën) st
  9. WELLENS Tim (Lotto Soudal) st
  10. CICCONE Giulio (Trek-Segafredo) st

Top 10, GC

  1. VAN AERT Wout (Team Jumbo – Visma)
  2. ALAPHILIPPE Julian (Deceuninck – QuickStep) +0:04
  3. VAN DER POEL Mathieu (Alpecin – Fenix) +0:08
  4. SIVAKOV Pavel (Ineos Grenadiers) +0:11
  5. LANDA Mikel (Bahrain – Victorious) +0:13
  6. VENDRAME Andrea (AG2R Citroën) +0:14
  7. STANNARD Robert (Team BikeExchange) st
  8. ALMEIDA João (Deceuninck – QuickStep) st
  9. POGACAR Tadej (UAE – Team Emirates) st
  10. ARANBURU Alex (Astana – Premier Tech) st

Sam Bennett wins again at Paris-Nice

Sam Bennett won his second stage of Paris-Nice this year in Bolléne, with Nacer Bouhanni taking second and Pascal Ackermann third. Despite going down in a late-race crash, Primoz Roglic still leads the overall classification with Maximilian Schachmann 31 seconds behind and Brandon McNulty a further six seconds down.

“I was suffering the last few km. I don’t know what it is, but people won’t let me follow my own train here and it’s frustrating in the final. I just got back on just before the roundabout,” Bennett said at the finish. “It was a very hard final. I didn’t think I’d hold it to the line, but the guys did an incredible job and I’m proud that I could finish it off.”

It was an interesting day in Paris-Nice. A strong headwind encouraged the peloton to stay together and guaranteed a bunch sprint at the finish.

A highlight of the day may have been when an 11-rider break attempted to escape with 70 km to go. The entire move was made of Belgian riders, including Philippe Gilbert, Oliver Naesen, and Jasper Stuyven. The breakaway would have been a serious threat considering the quality of riders, but they were brought back rather quickly when the rest of the peloton caught on to their game.

With 35 km to go, Roglic went down along with his teammate Tony Martin. Roglic rejoined the peloton quickly, but Martin was not able to get back on his bike. At the finish Jumbo-Visma’s director, Grischa Niermann explained that Martin had significant pain in his elbow and had been taken to the hospital.

The final kilometre was hectic and after the race Bennett was critical of the other sprinter’s teams. “For some reason, I’m not being left to follow my own wheel. Guys are coming in and they just wanted to disrupt our sprint instead of concentrating on their own race. We don’t look at anybody else, so I don’t know why they’re getting so fixated on us,” said Bennett.

Top 10, stage 5

1 BENNETT Sam (Deceuninck – QuickStep) 5:16:01
2 BOUHANNI Nacer (Team Arkéa Samsic) st
3 ACKERMANN Pascal (Bora – hansgrohe) st
4 BAUHAUS Phil (Bahrain – Victorious) st
5 NIZZOLO Giacomo (Team Qhubeka ASSOS) st
6 KRISTOFF Alexander (UAE – Team Emirates) st
7 COQUARD Bryan (B&B Hotels p/b KTM) st
8 LAPORE Christophe (Cofidis, Solutions Crédits) st
9 BARBIER Rudy (Israel Start-Up Nation) st
10 VAN POPPEL Danny (Intermarché – Wanty – Gobert Matériaux) st

Top 10, GC

1 ROGLIC Primoz (Team Jumbo-Visma) 13:26:40
2 SCHACHMANN Maximilian (BORA – hansgrohe) 0:31
3 MCNULTY Brandon (UAE-Team Emirates) 0:37
4 IZAGIRRE Ion (Astana – Premier Tech) 0:40
5 VLASOV Aleksandr (Astana – Premier Tech) 0:41
6 JORGENSON Matteo (Movistar Team) 0:58
7 BENOOT Tiesj (Team DSM) 1:04
8 HAMILTON Lucas (Team BikeExchange) 1:08
9 SÁNCHEZ Luis León (Astana – Premier Tech) 1:11
10 LATOUR Pierre (Team Total Direct Energie) 1:12

Ellen van Dijk wins time trial at Healthy Ageing Tour

Ellen van Dijk was dominant in the stage 2 time trial at the Healthy Ageing Tour. The Dutchwoman won the windy 14.4 km out and back, beating Amy Pieters and Lisa Brennauer who took second and third, respectively.

The stage started much later than planned due to high winds. Organizers announced the night before the stage that it would be pushed from 11 CET to 14 CET, and postponed the race a further two hours the morning of. In addition to the changed start time, the organizers asked riders to race on road bikes instead of time trial bikes.

Headed into the final stage of the race Van Dijk leads by 23 seconds over Pieters and 25 seconds over Brennauer. Emma Norsgaard also threw down an impressive effort, placing fourth on the day and the Danish national champion holds fourth overall ahead of stage 3.

Top 10, Stage 2

  1. VAN DIJK Ellen (Trek – Segafredo) 20:54
  2. PIETERS Amy (SD Worx) +0:26
  3. BRENNAUER Lisa (Ceratizit – WNT Pro Cycling) +0:30
  4. NORSGAARD Emma (Team Movistar) +0:36
  5. KLEIN Lisa (Canyon – SRAM) +0:39
  6. LOWDEN Joscelin (Drops – Le Col supported by Tempur) +0:43
  7. BARNES Alice (Canyon – SRAM) +0:51
  8. BEEKHUIS Teuntje (Jumbo – Visma Women) +1:02
  9. HENDERSON Anna (Jumbo – Visma Women) +1:03
  10. HENGEVELD Daniek (GT Krush Tunap) +1:05

Top 10, GC

  1. VAN DIJK Ellen (Trek – Segafredo)
  2. PIETERS Amy (SD Worx) +0:23
  3. BRENNAUER Lisa (Ceratizit – WNT Pro Cycling) +0:25
  4. NORSGAARD Emma (Team Movistar) +0:33
  5. KLEIN Lisa (Canyon – SRAM) +0:39
  6. LOWDEN Joscelin (Drops – Le Col supported by Tempur) +0:41
  7. BARNES Alice (Canyon – SRAM) +0:45
  8. BEEKHUIS Teuntje (Jumbo – Visma Women) +1:02
  9. HENDERSON Anna (Jumbo – Visma Women) st
  10. HENGEVELD Daniek (GT Krush Tunap) +1:05

The Mayor of Nice requests relocation of final stage of Paris-Nice

In a series of tweets, the Mayor of Nice Christian Estrosi has requested that the final stage of Paris-Nice, set to take place on Sunday, March 14th, be relocated away from the Promenade des Anglais. 

“This evening, I convened the Scientific Council which has been accompanying me since the start of this crisis in order to take stock of the government’s decision, announced in the middle of the day, to extend the confinement by a weekend.” Estrosi wrote on Twitter. The final tweet of the thread read; “for more consistency, I also request the cancellation of the arrival of Paris-Nice as scheduled.”

Read the full story here.

Batty and Arsenault team up with Canyon MTB Racing

Emily Batty and Laurie Arsenault will race as the Canyon MTB Racing team this year.

Canyon announced that it had signed deals with Batty, the reigning Canadian national champ, and then Arsenault, who has won multiple national titles as a junior and under-23 racer, earlier this year. The Canyon MTB Racing team officially launched on Thursday. According to a press release, “The team’s planned schedule includes an entire World Cup series, the XCO World Championships in Val di Sole, and a shot at Olympic gold in Tokyo at the end of July.” The team will make its first start next month at the Bike the Rock on April 24.

Coming Up…

Paris-Nice continues with stage 6. The stage starts in Brignoles and features a handful of categorized climbs, the most significant being the Côte de Cabris followed immediately by the Col du Ferrier midway through the stage. After the Côte de Gourdon, the peloton will descend towards Biot before taking on a final 1.9 km climb averaging 5%.

The third stage of Tirreno-Adriatico is rolling from start to finish. It is the longest stage of the race at 216 km. Despite the undulating terrain, only one climb is categorized, the Poggio della Croce at 138 km. The race finishes with a gradual climb into Gualdo Tadino.

The Healthy Ageing Tour will wrap up with 17 laps of a closed circuit. Each lap takes on the 400-meter long Vam-Berg. At 5.8% average gradient, it will be a slow burn to the legs. The race will be an exciting one to watch with a few really good sprinters in the top ten.

In case you missed it…

  • James Huang and Dave Rome chatted with key members of the Deceuninck – QuickStep team as well as Jeff Meyer of Roval to discuss the team’s transition to clinchers with inner tubes on this week’s Nerd Alert Podcast.
  • You like big sunnies, you say? James showcases the newest of POC‘s sunglasses lineup, the Devour.
  • Matt de Neef introduces us to the next big name in Belgian cycling, Mauri Vansevenant.
  • Route Werks made quite the splash when they launched a Kickstarter campaign for a handlebar bag. James Huang explains why it’s as good as it was made out to be.

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