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Hello again, CyclingTips readers!
You’ve made it to the end of the week! Do you have any celebrations planned?
Nacer Bouhanni probably does. The Frenchman nabbed his first victory with his new Arkéa-Samsic team – and his first since 2018 – on stage 4 of the Saudi Tour. Not a bad way to get the year going in a new squad, and Bouhanni now leads the race with just one stage to go.
Speaking of lead changes, the Volta a la Comunitat Valenciana had one as well. As Dylan Groenewegen sprinted to the stage 3 victory, Jack Haig leapfrogged Tadej Pogacar in the general classification with two days left to race.
Here’s hoping you enjoy the weekend!
| Pogacar powers into Valenciana lead
Tadej Pogacar climbed to the stage 2 victory and the GC lead on Thursday at the Volta a la Comunitat Valenciana.
The 181-kilometer stage from Torrent to Cullera came down to a battle of big names in an uphill finale, with Pogacar besting Alejandro Valverde and Dylan Teuns to get the win.
| Kennedy defends Herald Sun Tour title
Lucy Kennedy nabbed her second straight overall win at the Herald Sun Tour in an action-packed second and final stage.
Ella Harris bested Sarah Gigante for the stage victory in Falls Creek, with Kennedy in third on the day but far enough ahead of her GC rivals to take a clear overall win. Jaime Gunning and Arlenis Sierra rounded out the GC podium.
In the men’s race, Jai Hindley climbed to the stage 2 win ahead of Damian Howson and Sebastian Berwick. Hindley now leads the race with a four-second advantage over Howson.
| 2020 Tour of Oman officially canceled
Some time after it initially emerged that this year’s Tour of Oman would be canceled following the death of Sultan Qaboos, organizers made the news official on Thursday.
There had been some talk of rescheduling the race, with reports of a possible March date, but that plan has apparently been abandoned.
| Bauhaus sprints to Saudi Tour stage 3 win
Phil Bauhaus out-sprinted Reinardt Janse van Rensburg and Youcef Reguigui to win stage 3 of the Saudi Tour.
In so doing, Bauhaus powered into the race lead, moving three seconds ahead of Rui Costa in the overall standings.
| Cort wins Étoile de Bessèges stage 2
Magnus Cort won stage 2 of the Étoile de Bessèges. The Dane topped Edvald Boasson Hagen and Tom Devriendt in a bunch sprint.
Stage 1 winner Alexys Brunel continues to lead the race with three stages to go.
In case you missed it
| Shannon Malseed on her Bay Crits crash and the importance of staying positive
CyclingTips caught up with Shannon Malseed, who is working her way back from a bad crash earlier this year at the Bay Crits.
| The agonizing joy of a first pro win
As Ella Harris now knows, getting that first pro victory can be quite an experience. Matt de Neef has the story.
| In allegations of institutional racism, a black-British rider’s quest for change
Russell Williams, a force on the road and track in his prime, was the kind of rider you’d expect might have been pulled onto Great Britain’s national track program, supported in his training, been called up for the world championships or the Olympics. Williams says he did not get those opportunities due to his race.
| Bikes of the Bunch: Cyfac Exostiff gravel
This week’s Bikes of the Bunch comes from French frame builder Cycaf International.
| Women’s cycling survey
CyclingTips is hoping to get some input from you (our audience) as we work to improve our coverage of women’s cycling. Click here to take our survey—we’d love to hear from you.
Today’s featured image of the finale of stage 2 at the Volta a la Comunitat Valenciana comes from Cor Vos.