PARIS (AFP) — Elia Viviani sprinted to victory on the opening stage of the Eneco Tour following a 183.5km stage around Bolsward in the Netherlands on Monday.
“We preferred to stay at the front to stay out of all the crashes,” Viviani said in a team statement. “In the final kilometer, Andy Fenn took me and put me on the best wheel. When I saw Greipel’s wheel I took that and I thought, ‘Okay I’m in a good position.’”
Top 10, stage 1
1. Elia VIVIANI, TEAM SKY, in 4:06:18
2. Danny VAN POPPEL, TREK FACTORY RACING, at :00
3. Jean-Pierre DRUCKER, BMC RACING TEAM, at :00
4. André GREIPEL, LOTTO SOUDAL, at :00
5. Jonas VANGENECHTEN, IAM CYCLING, at :00
6. Andrea GUARDINI, ASTANA PRO TEAM, at :00
7. Magnus Cort NIELSEN, ORICA – AIS, at :00
8. Moreno HOFLAND, TEAM LOTTO NL – JUMBO, at :00
9. Jose Joaquin ROJAS GIL, MOVISTAR TEAM, at :00
10. Dylan GROENEWEGEN, ROOMPOT ORANJE PELOTON, at :00
1. Elia VIVIANI, TEAM SKY, in 4:06:08
2. Danny VAN POPPEL, TREK FACTORY RACING, at :04
3. Jesper ASSELMAN, ROOMPOT ORANJE PELOTON, at :04
4. Laurens DE VREESE, ASTANA PRO TEAM, at :05
5. Nico DENZ, AG2R LA MONDIALE, at :05
6. Jean-Pierre DRUCKER, BMC RACING TEAM, at :06
7. Nathan HAAS, TEAM CANNONDALE – GARMIN, at :08
8. André GREIPEL, LOTTO SOUDAL, at :10
9. Jonas VANGENECHTEN, IAM CYCLING, at :10
10. Andrea GUARDINI, ASTANA PRO TEAM, at :10
“When he started to sprint he went very fast, and I thought, ‘Now I wait a second and then I go.’ I think I did 200 meters of a sprint. I had good legs in the final today and after a long gap without races following the Giro this is the best way to start a new second part of the season.”
The Italian Team Sky sprinter edged out Dutchmen Danny van Poppel (Trek Factory Racing) and Jean-Pierre Drucker (BMC), while Tour de France sprint star Andre Greipel (Lotto-Soudal) could manage only fourth after launching his dash for the line too early. The race was pan-flat and free of the usual windy conditions characteristic of racing on the Dutch coast. It was the Italian’s first win since stage 2 of the Giro d’Italia in early May.
Tuesday’s second of seven stages is a 180km ride around Breda, also in the Netherlands.
The Eneco Tour finishes on Sunday in Geraardsbergen in Belgium.
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