Late mechanical for Trentin in the final, Yates stays out of trouble on stage two Paris-NiceMon 5 Mar 2018
Mitchelton-SCOTT’s general classification hopeful Simon Yates was able to stay out of trouble on a pan-flat second stage today in Paris-Nice to finish on the same time as the bunch and remain in contention overall.
The team didn’t feature in the final bunch kick after Matteo Trentin suffered a late mechanical problem with just three kilometres remaining. In the end it was Dylan Groenewegen (LottoNL-Jumbo) who took the stage victory on the punchy uphill finish in Vierzon, with Esteban Chaves the highest placed finisher for the team in 18th spot.
Steady start, no breakaway
Racing along pan-flat roads into a headwind, the peloton remained altogether for 115kilometres of racing despite a few attacks no breakaway was able to form. In no hurry, the bunch rolled along averaging just 33kilometres per hour for the first two hours.
Finally with 65kilometres to go the race began to heat up as six riders tried to get away and gained a very small advantage, but the peloton appeared unhappy with the combination and four of them in, with two riders, Tiago Machado (Katusha-Alpecin) and Manuele Boaro (Bahrain-Merida) able to stay ahead.
The duo rode out to two minutes 50seconds before been drawn back in and the catch finally made with just four kilometres to go.
Out of stage contention but safe overall
With a uphill drag to the line, the sprint was one for the punchier riders which could have suited Trentin well, however, after a breaking his wheel coming into the final the opportunity to sprint was gone for the 28-year-old who rolled in behind the main bunch.
The team’s climbers and general classification hopefuls were able to cross the line safely in the main group to remain in a good position with Chaves eighth and Yates in 20th place overall at 15seconds heading into the hillier stages later in the week.
“I was in good position coming into the final then the bunch was moving a lot, everybody braked in one moment and somebody went into the back of me and broke all my spokes. I had to stop change the wheel and it was only three kilometres to go.”
“I tried to get back and actually made it to the back of the bunch but it was already 500metres to go so my race was over for the stage.”
“We had double ambitions with having Matteo Trentin there and a perfect uphill finish for him today and then trying to look after the GC guys especially Simon.“
“It was very chaotic because it had been quite an easy start, normally if you have a 185kilometre stage then there can be a bit of tiredness in the legs."
“Unfortunately Matteo had a problem with about three kilometres to go so the only things todo then was to make sure Simon stayed on the same time, there may have been some gaps at the front but the main thing was he came in safely.”
Paris-Nice stage two results:
1. Dylan Groenewegen (LottoNL-Jumbo) 4:5131
2. Elia Viviani (Team Sky) ST
3. Andre Greipel (Lotto-Soudal) ST
18. Esteban Chaves (Mitchelton-SCOTT) ST
Paris-Nice general classification results:
1. Arnaud Demare (FDJ) 7:58:57
2. Julian Alaphilippe (Quickstep-Floors) +0:10
3. Mike Teunissen (Team Sunweb) +0:13
8. Esteban Chaves (Mitchelton-SCOTT) +0:15
Photo courtesy of Getty Images