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Descent recon pays dividends for Boasson Hagen

By:
Sam Dansie
Published:
July 20, 2011, 19:45 BST,
Updated:
July 20, 2011, 20:44 BST
Edition:
Second Edition Cycling News, Wednesday, July 20, 2011
Race:
Tour de France, Stage 17
Edvald Boasson Hagen (Sky) gets stage win number two in the Tour de France.

Edvald Boasson Hagen (Sky) gets stage win number two in the Tour de France.

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Norwegian takes second stage of Tour de France

While others crashed and overcooked corners on today's technical final descent into Pinerolo, Edvald Boasson Hagen kept his cool to take his second stage win of the Tour de France – and put regrets about yesterday's mis-timed sprint to bed.

The Team Sky rider, who finished alone after countering an attack from French champion Sylvain Chavanel on the Cote de Pramartino climb, said he was eager to get stuck into the descent alone because he had ridden the climb twice in training and watched it several times on video.

"I was looking forward to the descent," he said. "I wanted to go up the climb alone and not have any more attacks, so I bridged up to Chavanel and then went on my own to do the descent at my own rhythm."

On the previous day's stage to Gap, although he was outnumbered by two Garmin-Cervélo riders, he admitted he should have opened up the sprint against the eventual winner, Thor Hushovd, earlier.

"It was a great feeling to come to the finish line on my own today, because I really wanted to win this stage. Yesterday I came close but with two against one, it was hard to do anything different.

"Today, I again felt good and capable of attacking, so my victory felt like a great revenge for the frustration that I had yesterday, and now I don't think about it anymore."

The Pramartino descent was lit up by a number of riders overcooking corners. Even yellow jersey-wearing Thomas Voeckler, who is usually unflappable on descents, misread two corners which had also caught out his compatriot, Jonathan Hivert.

"I didn't find it that dangerous," said Boasson Hagen. "It's quite technical for sure, but I was alone and I knew it. Perhaps if I hadn't known it and I was riding in a group I would say something different."

The 24 year-old took his first Tour stage victory in Lisieux on stage 6 this year.

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Tags:
Tour de France