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by Mark Zalewski
February 16, 2017
In today’s CyclingTips Daily News Digest: Hermans wins Tour of Oman, stage 2; Valderde wins Ruta Del Sol opener; Gaviria wins first stage of Volta ao Algarve; Riders’ association protests disc brake usage without further safety measures; After a shining Tour performance, Pantano nurturing a big long-term goal; 2017 Paris-Roubaix to feature more cobbles than in 2016; No Cauberg finish for Amstel Gold Race in 2017; 2017 Women’s Tour to finish in London; Inga Thompson returning to cycling to advocate for the women’s peloton; Shane Perkins to race with Russia in bid for Tokyo 2020; Successful surgery for Chris Butler; Abu Dhabi Tour announces provisional start list; ‘One More Brew’ Garburn Winter Cyclocross.
Fernando Gaviria (Quick-Step Floors) continued his early season winning form, winning the opening stage of the Volta ao Algarve. After taking two wins in Argentina last month at the Vuelta de San Juan he took his first European race win ahead of André Greipel (Lotto Soudal) and Nacer Bouhanni (Cofidis).
Courtesy: Quick Step Floors
The main break of the day included Justin Oien (Caja Rural-Seguros RGA), Brian van Goethem (Roompot-Nederlandse Loterij), Christoph Pfingsten (Bora-Hansgrohe), Adam de Vos (Rally Cycling) and João Benta (RP-Boavista). But the move was controlled from the start by the numerous powerful sprint teams.
Adam de Vos was clearly only in the break for the KOM points and after taking them on the day’s only climb, he sat-up and returned to the pelton.
The break was caught rather early with 25km still remaining. This allowed for tactics with Gaviria’s teammate Max Richeze launching a solo attack near the end, forcing the other sprint teams to use their lead-out riders early to bring him back.
When the sprint finally came Bouhanni, running out of riders, started his sprint too early and faded. Gaviria wisely sat on Andre Greipel’s wheel and came around the German with 150m to go for the win, crossing the line with his now well-known wrist kiss, a nod to a missing bracelet from his girlfriend.