Impey strong for second on stage two of Tour Down UnderWed 21 Jan 2015
2014 Tour of Alberta winner Daryl Impey has collected valuable bonus seconds with a second place finish on stage two of the Santos Tour Down Under.
The South African arrived fresh for the final lap around Stirling thanks to the breakaway efforts of teammate Cameron Meyer who spent the day in a group of three off the front.
Impey was moved into position and led out by Luke Durbridge, Mathew Hayman and Simon Clarke before hitting the front in the closing metres. Juan Jose Lobato came from a long way back to steal the stage across the line.
South Australian Jack Bobridge retained the leader's jersey whilst Impey moved up to fourth, seven seconds adrift.
“Our focus is on general classification now and we are trying different ways to get up there,” Impey said.
“I think all the boys are riding really well, everyone’s into their jobs and I had fantastic help from all the boys in the final. Unfortunately there was just one guy faster than me. Hats off to him, there was nothing more we could have done today.
“Today’s finish gives you a good indication of where everyone is at, so to be at the front end of that is pleasing. We are building on our confidence everyday and we will have to see how tomorrow goes.”
After a series of early attacks, including one involving Clarke, the day’s major break of Meyer, Campbell Flakemore (BMC Racing) and Thomas De Gendt (Lotto-Soudal) formed.
The trio’s advantage hovered around three minutes before a chasing peloton, led by IAM Cycling, worked to avoid the scenario of yesterday’s finish.
The race was back together for the 21km final lap, and the field diminished from the intensity of racing.
“We knew it would be an aggressive start today,” sport director Matt White said. “We wanted to put pressure on other teams to chase and maybe form a bigger split.”
“As it turned out only three riders ended up getting away, with Cam in there, so we were covered for the rest of the day as far as working. Then it was all about preparing Daryl for the final kilometres and the boys did a very good job.”
Tomorrow's stage three starts in Norwood and travels to Paracombe. The 143.2km route takes in three mid-race circuits before a mountain top finish. The final climb is the day’s only classified climb, whilst three sprints feature in Charleston on the circuit.
“I think tomorrow is going to be crucial,” White said. “Tomorrow is the day that is going to decide general classification for everybody.
“But today was start for us, we got some time bonuses, which are crucial here, and we will take them.”