Tirreno-Adriatico Stage 2: Cavendish Stays in Maglia Azzurra After Bunch Sprint
Omega Pharma - Quick-Step Cycling Team rider Mark Cavendish remains the race leader after the group finish at 166km Tirreno-Adriatico Stage 2 on Thursday.
Cavendish was in about 15th position in the final kilometer, but OPQS was boxed in, in the middle of the peloton, approaching the final meters. Matteo Pelucchi (IAM Cycling) won the stage, launching off the wheel of Andre Greipel (Lotto-Belisol) in the final meters. Greipel was 3rd. Arnaud Demare (FDJ) finished 2nd. Cavendish was the top finisher for the team, in 17th place.
OPQS looks next to 210km Stage 3, from Cascina to Arezzo, on Friday. Cavendish won the 2012 stage that arrived in the same city. This stage is undulating, and also has a final kilometer that is uphill for the last 900 meters, including a max ramp of 11% and an average gradient of 5 percent.
"I was behind Marcel Kittel (Giant-Shimano) when he crashed," Cavendish said about the crash of the German sprinter for Giant-Shimano inside the final few kilometers. "So, I was in the back a bit and lost some speed. I had to use a lot of energy to return to the front. The team did a good job getting me back there. In the end it was a bit chaotic. But that can happen in cycling. Today I had a good feeling throughout the race, so I am pretty confident about the next stages."