Your Friday Daily News Digest

by Mark Zalewski

January 27, 2017

In today’s CyclingTips Daily News Digest: Navardauskas takes Bahrain-Merida inaugural win in San Juan TT; Greipel sprints to win in Challenge Mallorca opener; Kirsten Wild just pips Chloe Hosking in Race Melbourne photo finish; Sam Bennett sprints to victory at Race Melbourne, the Cadel’s Race curtain-raiser crit; Mark Cavendish: Merckx’s Tour de France record is now a realistic target for me; Cyclocross worlds preview: In Bieles, a new chapter will be written between the sport’s two young stars; French teams dominate wildcard selections for Tour de France, Paris-Nice and Critérium du Dauphiné; Retired pro cyclist Tom Zirbel shifts to triathlon; World Championship course proving to be a challenge; Former pro talks about battle with depression, suicide attempts; Vuelta a San Juan, stage 3 highlights; Video: Abu Dhabi Tour preview; Video: Tony Martin off to rocky start with Katusha-Alpecin.

Sam Bennett sprints to victory at Race Melbourne, the Cadel’s Race curtain-raiser crit

by Matt de Neef

After several near misses last week at the Tour Down Under, Sam Bennett (Bora-Hansgrohe) has taken his first win of the 2017 season, sprinting to victory at Race Melbourne.

The Irishman flew down the barriers to take a comfortable victory in the 116.6km circuit around Melbourne’s Albert Park, finishing several bike lengths ahead of Danny van Poppel (Sky) and Scott Sunderland (IsoWhey Sports-SwissWellness). Edward Theuns (Trek-Segafredo) was fourth while pre-race favourite Caleb Ewan (Orica-Scott) had to settle for fifth place after being boxed in.

“I’m extremely happy,” Bennett said afterwards. “To get the first win of the season’s really nice and takes a little bit of pressure off.”

“I’d like to thank Ralph [Denk, team manager] and Bora-Hansgrohe for setting up a great race program and supporting us here and also to my teammates who supported me all day. They did a fantastic job and they got me out of trouble even the last three corners.

“I kind of lost the wheel and they still managed to get me in a great position.”

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