Irishman Sam Bennett (Bora-Argon 18) continued his successful early season run Thursday, sprinting to a third-place finish during the second stage of Tirreno-Adriatico, just missing out to Jens Debusschere (Lotto-Soudal) and Peter Sagan (Tinkoff-Saxo).
Bennett's German Pro Continental team got into the action early in the day, with Cristiano Salerno and Patrick Konrad infiltrating a breakaway of seven riders that slipped away near the start of the 153km stage from Camaiore to Cascina.
"We are very satisfied," Bora-Argon 18 director Enrico Poitschke. "The team prepared the entire stage for Sam. They did a top job and given the sprint competition, Sam's third place is a superb result. Of course, we always want to win but that wasn't possible today. Due to the crash within the last 100 meters, Sam had to disrupt his sprint when he avoided crashing."
Poitschke said that both Konrad and Salerno had been tasked with making the days breakaway, and it provided the team with an advantage when they both made the selection.
"We tried with Patrick to score some points for the KOM jersey. That worked and now he has the first points in his pocket," Poitschke said. "We still have some stages to go and maybe we have the chance to fight for the KOM jersey at the end of the race. Bartosz and Björn were involved in a crash with 10km to go. That affected our sprint lead-out but the most important thing is that both riders are OK and nothing serious happened."
Poitschke added that Bennett, who won a stage at the Tour of Qatar earlier this year, is ready for more results this week.
"He still has reserves left and he is confident to go for more. That makes us optimistic."