Bunch sprint concludes stage two at the Tour of Poland

Sun 30 Jul 2017

Stage two of the Tour of Poland concluded with another bunch sprint finish, unfortunately for ORICA-SCOTT today young Australian sprinter Caleb Ewan found himself caught out with no clear pathway to really contest the sprint.

The Giro d’Italia stage winner jumped from the wheel of teammate and lead-out man Luka Mezgec with around two kilometres to go and had to battle through the group as riders surged from behind creating a huge bunched up sprint.

Ewan eventually finished the stage in 21st place as Sacha Modolo (UAE Emirates) stole the day's victory.

Sport director Dave McPartland was disappointed with the result but acknowledged that sprinting is sometimes like this and that it came down to a miscommunication between the team out on the road.

“We messed up today, we had a bit of miscommunication in the final and that cost us,” explained McPartland. “We also missed a couple of guys in the final that could have made a difference but sometimes that’s just sprinting, it can be a bit of a lottery.”

“Yesterday was a positive, today not so much but we can take things from this, put today’s race behind us and move forward to tomorrow’s stage with Adam Yates.

"We have a team here to do multiple roles so tomorrow we can switch and focus now on the overall. 

“We still have one stage that could be a potential sprint, not a guaranteed sprint stage like these first two day’s but we will certainly take the opportunity with Caleb again if we can.”

How it happened:

Stage two of the tour began like yesterday’s race with a breakaway of four riders creating a lead within the opening kilometres.

Martijn Keizer (Lotto-Jumbo), Joonas Henttala (Team Novo-Nordick), Adrian Kurek (CCC) and Kamil Gradek (One-Pro Cycling) quickly established a two minute 30second advantage over the steady peloton.

Eventually Kurek decided to take the race on solo and attacked away from his breakaway companions, hovering around three minutes ahead of the peloton with the three other breakaway riders inbetween.

With 30kilometres to go the CCC rider was finally absorbed by the chasing peloton, leaving the race open to a potential sprint as the peloton navigated around the final finishing circuits. 

Once again like yesterday’s race, riders tried their luck in the final kilometres with solo attacks but with a rapid pace in the peloton nobody was given any freedom.

Mezgec found him self on the front early with Ewan tucked in the wheels, but with still three kilometres remaining it proved to be too far and Ewan became caught up in the messy bunch inside the last kilometre.

Unable to find a clear space to make his jump, the 23-year-old had to settle for a minor placing, unable to fully contest the sprint.

Tomorrow the race heads into lumpier terrain and provides the first real day to shake up the general classification.

Tour of Poland stage two results:

1. Sacha Modolo (UAE Emirates) 3:15:21
2. Danny van Poppel (Team Sky) ST
3. Maximilian Walsceid (Team Sunweb) ST
21. Caleb Ewan (ORICA-SCOTT) ST 

General classification after stage two:

1. Danny van Poppel (Team Sky) 6:11:27
2. Peter Sagan (Bora-Hansgrohe) ST
3. Sacha Modolo (UAE Emirates) +0:04
4. Caleb Ewan (ORICA-SCOTT) +0:06

 Photos courtesy of TDWsport