Top twenty for Yates and Chaves on stage two of Tirreno-Adriatico

Thu 10 Mar 2016

2015 San Sebastian champion Adam Yates and 2015 Tour of Abu Dhabi winner Esteban Chaves of ORICA-GreenEDGE finished in 13th and 20th positions respectively on stage two of Tirreno-Adriatico today.

Zdenek Stybar (Etixx-Quickstep) took the win with a solo attack in the final kilometres which means that the Czech rider also moves into the race leaders blue jersey for stage three.

Sports director Matthew White was satisfied with how the stage unfolded.

“It was a long day in the office for the guys today and we did what we needed to do for the main part of the race,” White said.

“The final climb was hard but wasn’t as difficult as we had expected. There was a selection of maybe 40 riders, with our two climbers Yates and Chaves making it into the front group and finishing well.

“Tomorrow is a shorter stage with a finish that looks to favour the sprinters, hopefully giving Caleb (Ewan) an opportunity to show what he can do.”

How it happened:

Blue sky and sunshine welcomed the riders to the start of stage two in Camaiore and the day's racing got underway without incident. An early breakaway of six riders formed and developed a lead of 3:35” after around 20 kilometres.  

The parcours for stage two was designed by former Italian world champion Paolo Bettini and with a mainly flat route for the first 130 kilometres the breakaway were able to increase their advantage to nearly six minutes. BMC Racing, as expected, spent a lot of time on the front of the peloton protecting the blue leader's jersey of Italian Daniel Oss.

Approaching the Pian di Forno climb with 65 kilometres left to race BMC Racing, with Taylor Phinney doing the pace setting, started in earnest to eat into the time gap of the breakaway group. The peloton began to split as some riders including Mark Cavendish (Di-Data) lost contact towards the summit of the climb.

Despite the increased speed of the chasing peloton the escapees were still out front to compete for the intermediate sprint points and king of the mountains points on the Monterotondo Marittimo/Pian di Forno climb. 

As the race passed the start town of stage three, Castelnuovo Val de Cecina, and began the descent towards Montecerboli the leader's time had fallen to 2:30” over the chasing peloton. The time continued to fall as the riders arrived in Pomarance for the first time and began the circuits through the ‘Devils Valley’.

Movistar, with Alejandro Valverde in mind, joined BMC Racing at the front of the peloton and with less than ten kilometres to race the remaining three breakaway riders were mercilessly swallowed up by the peloton.

In the final kilometres attacks began to spring from the peloton, first with Diego Ulissi (Lampre-Merida), then Stybar followed by Vincenzo Nibali (Astana). The rolling approach and uphill finish proved to be an exciting finale with Stybar holding off Nibali and the rest of the chasers to take the victory. Peter Sagan (Tinkoff) claimed second place with Edvald Boassen Hagen (Di-Data) third.

Friday’s stage three starts in Castelnuovo Val de Cecina and follows a 176 kilometre route to Montalto Di Castro.

Tirreno-Adriatico stage two results:

1. Zdenek Stybar (Etixx-Quickstep) 5:10:03
2. Peter Sagan (Tinkoff) 0:00:01
3. Edvald Boasson Hagen (Team Dimension Data) 0:00:01
13. Adam Yates (ORICA-GreenEDGE) 0:00.01

General classification after stage two:

1. Zdenek Stybar (Etixx-Quickstep) 5:33:50
2. Greg Van Avermat (BMC Racing) 0:00:09
3. Tejay Van Garderen (BMC Racing) 0:00:09
21. Adam Yates (ORICA-GreenEDGE) 0:00:34