ORICA-SCOTT edge closer as Cort sprints to sixth on stage two in China

Fri 20 Oct 2017

After getting swamped on the opening stage sprint Danish fast man Magnus Cort broke out of the blocks on today’s stage two of the Tour of Guangxi to take sixth place for ORICA-SCOTT in a tightly contested uphill sprint.

A longer and more technical second stage was again characterised by a fast and frenetic start, filled with attacks over the first 50kilometres before a trio of riders were able to develop an advantage over the peloton as the race settled back down.

With a lumpier, but still sprinter friendly parcours there was never much chance that the leaders would stay clear and despite late attacks in the final kilometres the race came back together for a fast finale on the uphill drag to the finish in Nanning.

A strong effort from Cort saw the Dane claim a top ten finish, but it was Fernando Gaviria (QuickStep-Floors) who followed up his stage one win with another victory, maintaining his overall race lead going into tomorrow’s stage three.

“Today we decided to go with Magnus in the final,” said sport director Matt Wilson. “He has good legs at the moment, he’s really motivated and the uphill finish suited his characteristics.”

“The guys did a great job going into the final kilometres, we maintained our position well and in hindsight maybe dropped Magnus off a little bit too early with around 500metres to go, but he made the best of it and did well to get a solid result.

“It’s a shorter stage again tomorrow around Nanning City and will more than likely be another fast day that culminates in a sprint finish before the general classification guys come into play on stage four.”

How it happened:

A slightly lumpier second day of racing that included two category three climbs and a short ramp up to the finish got underway much like the opening day, amid a flurry of early attacks.

The attacks continued over the first 30kilometres with Jens Keukeleire part of a seven-rider move that was brought back before the breakaway duly formed after 50kilometres of racing.

Three riders pushed on ahead and developed a lead of four minutes before the peloton decided to re-engage as the race approached the closing 45kilometres, with the gap dropping immediately below two minutes.

With only ten kilometres remaining the leaders were within reach at ten seconds when attacks started to spring from the peloton before finally coming back together with less than four kilometres to go.

Yet again it was Gaviria who took the stage victory on the uphill drag to the line with the Colombian proving to be the man to beat.

Tour of Guangxi stage two results:

1. Fernando Gaviria (QuickStep-Floors) 03:43:54

2. Max Walscheid (Team-Sunweb) ST

3. Wouter Wippert (Cannondale-Drapac) ST

6. Magnus Cort (ORICA-SCOTT) ST

Photos courtesy of ©