Groves getting closer with a strong second place on stage two in China

Wed 19 Sep 2018

Former Australian junior road champion Kaden Groves showed a clean pair of heels on stage two at the Tour of China II today, sprinting into second place for Mitchelton-BikeExchange and inching closer every day to a stage win.

Chinese rider Zhi Hui Jiang finished safely in the bunch to maintain his lead in the best Asian rider category on a day that saw two categorised climbs come before the finish with the only disruption a large crash occurring at one kilometre to go that the Chinese outfit managed to avoid.

Avoiding the crash was one thing, but the disruption it caused to the field was another and the knock-on-effect was that race leader Anthony Giacoppo (Bennelong-SwissWellness) got the jump on Groves to take the victory.

Second on the day moves Groves up to second overall with Sam Jenner now in third and on course for a strong overall result pending Saturday’s crucial individual time trial.

Sport director James Victor:

“The Chinese guys were great today. They rode strongly at the front shutting moves down, keeping things under control and more importantly communicating and understanding what was expected very well.”

“We wanted to go for the stage win with Kaden to try and move him into the leader’s jersey and we came very close to achieving that. Giacoppo hit out early due to the crash at one kilometre to go and gained a slight advantage, another 25metres or so and Kaden would’ve caught him.

“Sam and Zhi Hui Jiang both did a great job going into the final and maintain their positions on GC and also the Asian rider’s jersey, but as we said previously the key day will be Saturday and the ITT.

“Tomorrow’s stage is made up of fast circuits and it’s another opportunity for us to try again in the sprint and see if we can get that stage win.”

Tour of China II stage two results:

1. Anthony Giacoppo (Bennelong-SwissWellness) 02:56:23

2. Kaden Groves (Mitchelton-BikeExchange) ST

3. Damiano Cima (Nippo-Vini-Fantini-Europa-Ovini) ST

General classification after stage two:

1. Anthony Gioacoppo (Bennelong-SwissWellness) 05:23:09

2. Kaden Groves (Mitchelton-BikeExchange) +0:10

3. Sam Jenner (Mitchelton-BikeExchange) +0:14