Stannard runs top twenty as the sprinters dominate on stage two in BretagneThu 26 Apr 2018
Giro del Belvedere winner Robert Stannard finished in the lead group on stage two of the Tour de Bretagne today, with the sprinters dictating proceedings for the second day in a row and Mitchelton-BikeExchange looking ahead to the punchier stages.
Today’s 180kilometre second stage saw two riders go up the road early and gain close to three minutes on the peloton before being joined by two more and swelling to a quartet by the halfway a point.
With another opportunity for bunch sprint looking very likely the big teams controlled the front of the peloton and kept the leaders in check, starting to reduce the gap further as the race hit the closing local circuits.
In the end the catch was late, but timed well with the four riders caught and passed inside the final three kilometres with Italian sprinter Matteo Malucelli (Androni-Gioccatoli-Sidermec) taking the spoils and Stannard crossing the line part of the top 20 within the bunch.
“The sprinters teams pretty much controlled it throughout today’s stage and the outcome was no surprise, we’re here without a sprinter and the bunch kicks don’t suit our characteristics, but we maintained our position in the group and Rob finished well.”
“We are definitely looking forward to the later stages of the Tour when the circuits get harder and include some climbs, that will be better for us and create some more favourable opportunities to try and shake things up on the ascents.”
Sport director Dave Sanders:
“It was actually quite a dangerous finish on a fast downhill with corners on a rough road and we didn’t want to take any risks in the final. There was a crash on the closing circuits and thankfully we avoided it with all the guys finishing without any issues.”
“The boys are going well and it’s all positive at the moment, it has been a fast opening two days of racing and things should open up more over the coming stages .”
Tour de Bretagne stage two results:
1. Matteo Malucelli (Androni-Gioccatoli-Sidermec) 04:24:10
2. Max Kanter (Development-Team-Sunweb) ST
3. Jakub Mareczko (Willier-Triestina-Selle-Italia) ST
18. Robert Stannard (Mitchelton-BikeExchange) ST
Photos courtesy of the Tour de Bretagne.