Second place for debutant Caleb Ewan on first stage of Tour of BeijingFri 10 Oct 2014
The talent was obvious and the results now confirm it at WorldTour level.
20-year-old Caleb Ewan came extremely close to winning in his official debut for ORICA-GreenEDGE with a second place after Luca Mezgec (GIA) who blasted to the win in the tight sprint at the Tour of Beijing.
The opening stage was raced in undulating terrain in the mountainous area north west of Beijing.
The 167km stage from Chong Li to Zhangjiakou saw a three-rider break away dominate the stage until the final.
With 40 kilometres to go, the peloton upped the speed significantly, as the roads started to drop downwards towards Zhangjiakou.
Jérémy Roy (FDJ) was the last to get caught with 20km to go as Team Sky led the race towards the finish.
As the road widened in the last kilometres of the race, ORICA-GreenEDGE moved up to place Ewan before the sprint and with 200 metres go to, he accelerated hard on the right hand site of the finishing straight, but it wasn’t enough to get in front of Mezgec.
“We definitely came off to a great start with Caleb taking second,” sport director Matt White said.
“I’m convinced that he’s one of the fastest guys here and I wouldn’t be surprised if he can take a win here in Beijing, and that would be huge for a 20-year-old WorldTour debutant.
“He’s ready to compete with the best and he showed that with his finish today.
“The stage was a lot harder than it looked on the race profile with a lot of up and down and most of the stage was races in altitude. It all made for a very demanding first stage.
“All our guys are super motivated to get Caleb up there again and tomorrow we’re definitely in for another good opportunity.”