A difficult day for ORICA-SCOTT on stage two of Tirreno Adriatico

Thu 9 Mar 2017

ORICA-SCOTT endured mixed fortunes on today’s second stage of Tirreno Adriatico with the loss of first Roger Kluge and then Caleb Ewan before Adam Yates salvaged the stage with a top ten finish.

German lead out specialist, Kluge had been suffering with fever and sickness for the last few days and abandoned as the race hit the final third of today’s stage after giving his all in yesterdays team time trial and over 150kilometres today.

As ORICA-SCOTT regrouped, a crash on one of the last descents brought down Tour of Abu Dhabi stage winner Ewan, hitting the ground with some force and taking the impact on his shoulder, the 22-year-old tried to continue, but ten minutes later was also forced to abandon.

“Of course it is very unfortunate,” said Sport director Matt White. “With Roger we knew that he was struggling yesterday, but the crash of Caleb was totally unexpected and is really a blow. The one positive is that he doesn’t appear to have broken anything and will hopefully make a speedy recovery.”

“For sure it changes the complexion of the next couple of days for us, Caleb was second last year on what is the finish of tomorrows stage and it was a stage we had been targeting. Nevertheless that’s cycling, anything can happen at anytime and we will adapt and move forward.”

The stage was eventually won after a late attack by Geraint Thomas (Team-Sky) on the final climb of the day with GP Larciano winner Yates finishing strongly in seventh place and moving into 13th on the general classifcation, 24seconds behind race leader Greg Van Avermaet (BMC).

“Clearly the focus has shifted more onto Adam now,” explained White. “There was no need for him to push on today or take any risks and he rode very well at the end to keep himself up there with the other overall contenders.”

How it happened:

Another beautiful sunny morning welcomed the riders to the start in the picturesque historic centre of Camaiore a small medieval town nestled in the foothills at the start of the Alpi Apuane.

A long stage covering 229kilometres saw an early breakaway of six riders go clear shortly after the flag drop and after two hours of racing the group had over six minutes on the peloton.

With three categorised climbs coming before the uphill finish in Pomarance the second half of the stage took on an altogether different complexion as BMC Racing began to bring back the leaders with 60kilometres remaining.

Unfortunately Kluge, who had been suffering with a fever and sickness for the past couple of days had to abandon after trying his best to battle through.

Further misfortunate was to follow for ORICA-SCOTT as Ewan got caught up in a crash in the middle of the peloton and after remounting and attempting to carry on, the pain was too much and he too was forced to abandon.

Meanwhile the speed of the bunch intensified as the breakaway was finally caught and the attacks started to fly on the climb up to the finish in Pomarance.

Thomas broke clear of the reduced peloton with less than five kilometres to go and shook off the attentions of Bob Jungels (Quick-Step Floors) and Johnathan Csastroviejo (Movistar) to take the solo win.

Yates finished in seventh place at the head of the bunch and only nine second behind Thomas and now in 13TH place on the general classification.

Stage three takes place tomorrow and covers 204kilometres from Monterotondo Marittimo to Montalto di Castro. The stage is wavy with lots of undulations and technical roads before a long descent down to what should be a finish for the sprinters.

Tirreno Adriatico stage 2 results:

1. Geraint Thomas (Team-Sky) 05:51:44

2. Tom Dumoulin (Team-Sunweb) 00:00:09

3. Peter Sagan (Bora-Hansgrohe) ST

7. Adam Yates (ORICA-SCOTT) ST

General classification after stage 2:

1. Greg Van Avermaet (BMC) 06:15:14

2. Rohan Dennis (BMC) ST

3. Teejay Van Garderen (BMC) ST

13. Adam Yates (ORICA-SCOTT) 00:00:24

Photos courtesy of ©