Train temporarily stops Tirreno-Adriatico
On stage 2 of Tirreno-Adriatico, the breakaway had to stop for an oncoming train at a level crossing 103.3km into the stage while enjoying a 5:18 advantage on the peloton, giving the UCI rules their first test of the season in the men's peloton.
Giorgio Cecchinel (Androni Giocattoli-Sidermec), Simone Andreetta (Bardiani-CSF), Cesare Benedetti (Bora-Argon 18), Luis Mas Bonet (Caja Rural-Seguros RGA), Nikolay Mihaylov (CCC Sprandi Polkowice), and Federico Zurlo (Lampre-Merida) were the riders off the front when the arms went down.
Unlike in the women's Strade Bianche, where 15 riders were disqualified for ducking under the closing crossing arms, the Tirreno-Adriatico breakaway dutifully stopped. Once they got going again, the peloton was stopped to give the breakaway back their original lead in Casino di Terra.
The UCI strengthened the language of the rules regarding level crossings after a number of riders jumped across the tracks in front of an oncoming TGV train in Paris-Roubaix last year.
This time riders didn't seem to have a problem with the temporary halt to proceedings, and took the time to stretch and relax before resuming the race.
Taylor Phinney stretches while waiting for the gap to be re-established. Photo: TDW Sport
Sagan disappointed with second place in Pomarance at Tirreno-Adriatico
World champion Peter Sagan (Tinkoff) expressed his disappointment at placing second during stage 2 at Tirreno-Adriatico on Thursday. He was the fastest to cross the line in the reduced group sprint, but ended up seconds as Zdenek Stybar attacked and won the stage solo.
“It's a shame to come in second again,” Sagan said in a team press release. “We did well yesterday and tried hard today. The team was working well and Oscar [Gatto] pushed hard in the last kilometres to close the gap but it was a difficult finish. I did my sprint well and the feeling is good so I can be happy with that.”
Tinkoff director, Lars Michaelsen noted that Stybar’s attack surprised everyone and that he was proud of his team’s performance.
“Peter showed he's a champ today but it didn't come off. Everything went to plan, to wait for the final. The guys were well-positioned and briefed well before the stage. Oscar Gatto pushed hard at the end, with the two steep climbs and then the technical section. The guys from us who had the power were there in the finale but we missed Boaro who had to change his bike.
“Stybar surprised everybody with this super strong attack.”
Rally Cycling off to a winning start in Europe
Eric Young got Rally Cycling’s spring European campaign off to a stellar start with a win in the prologue of the Istrian Spring Trophy in Croatia. Young powered around the short two-kilometre course in 2.01. He finished three seconds ahead of Martijin Tusveld (Rabobank DT) and four seconds ahead of Jan Tratnik (Amplatz-BMC).
Young will wear the leader’s yellow jersey in the first stage, a 158km ride into the town of Labin.
“Eric is on great form at the moment and the short course made it ideal for a guy with a lot of power," said performance manager Jonas Carney. "It's a good start to our European campaign. We will now look to defend the leader’s jersey and build on this success.”
In an interview with Cyclingnews, Young said he hoped to gain more opportunities racing overseas but that he aims to do well in every opportunity he has to start a race. He will lead Rally Cycling's sprint team in 2016.
Canola secures points jersey for UnitedHealthcare in Taiwan
Over five days of racing at the Tour of Taiwan, Marco Canola (UnitedHealthcare Pro Cycling) secured the overall sprinter's green Jersey. The Italian sprinter stayed consistent through the changing terrain of the race to finish with 39 points, seven points clear of the second place finisher, according to a team press release. The Tour of Taiwan ended on Thursday with stage 5 at the Wuai Rukai Museum.
"As a team of sprinters here we focused on stages and the sprinters jersey. We had great success with two 2nd places and the green by end of week," said manager Mike Tamayo.