A well-timed sprint from Jayco-AIS rider Jay McCarthy was enough to take victory in the opening stage of the Internationale Thüringen-Rundfahrt in Germany. It was the fifth win for the men's team in Europe so far this season.
McCarthy, 18, overtook KED-Bianchi's Theo Reinhardt on the line to win in a time of 4:11:46 with Michael Koch (LKT Team Brandenburg) close behind in third place. The stage covered a 170 kilometre rolling course out and back from the town of Erfurt finishing with three laps of a seven kilometre circuit.
"There were a few attacks out on the road with riders chasing intermediate and mountain points but the race regrouped before the finishing circuit," said Jayco-AIS Team Director, James Victor. "Past the finish line each time there was a solid 700 metre uphill pitch at around 13 to 15 per cent and that split up the peloton.
"Jay and Pat (Lane) both rode into a lead group of around a dozen riders and Pat rode really well over the final kilometre to control the speed in a bid to set Jay up for the finish."
Lane, having done his job for McCarthy, dropped back to finish 11th, seven seconds behind his winning team mate. The main bunch rode home 21 seconds down.
The result puts McCarthy into the yellow jersey of overall leader. He also tops the points and best young rider classifications.
It's the first victory in Europe for the 2010 Australian junior road race champion who stepped into the U23 ranks this year but struggled early in the season with a niggling knee injury.
It's been a good European season so far for Jayco-AIS, with victories going to Richard Lang where he became the first Australian to win the San Martino - Trofeoa Priva, Pat Lane who won the third stage of the Giro del Friuli Venezia Giulia, Luke Durbridge took out two stages of the Olympia's Tour and Michael Hepburn claimed the second stage of the Tour of Norway.
Tomorrow's stage is a 22 kilometre team time trial in Streufdorf and Jayco AIS, who won this stage last year, is keen to repeat that result in 2011.