Luke Rowe led a sensational breakaway win on stage two of the Herald Sun Tour to record Team Sky’s second win in the race.
Rowe was in a group of 10 that spent nearly 140km in the lead, before he led a splinter group of four which he then dropped to ride solo to his first win since 2012.
He was awarded the most aggressive rider on the day on the 165.6 kilometre stage from Mount Beauty to Beechworth which saw him leave the peloton behind a little after the 20km mark.
The group of 10 was then whittled down to a foursome, which contained Conor Dunne (Aqua Blue Sport), Tanner Putt (UnitedHealthcare) and Robbie Hucker (IsoWhey Sports SwissWellness).
However, Rowe was able to maintain a pace that his fellow escapees were unable to match, which left him on his own to claim his first win for over four years.
Rowe revealed that a break was always on the cards and that the plan was hatched with Sport Director Brett Lancaster the previous night with Ian Stannard.
It’s been a while, it’s been an ongoing joke. I haven’t won anything for a long time.
He told TeamSky.com: “Last night I already said to Brett that we should try and go for a breakaway so we assigned myself and Yogi (Stannard) to go in the break so it was always the plan to go.
“The whole day I was wary of a few guys and there were some excellent climbers in the break and it was just a case of trying to use them up to the best of my advantage and I opened up a decent gap straight away so I enjoyed the last 20km solo.
The win represented Rowe’s first victory since taking a stage of the 2012 Tour of Britain and the 26-year-old chuckled: “It’s been a while, it’s been an ongoing joke. I haven’t won anything for a long time.
“I kind of forgot how to do it all so it’s nice to get the hands in the air.”
Stage two result:
1. Luke Rowe (Team Sky) 4:08:23
2. Conor Dunne (Aqua Blue Sport) +33"
3. Tanner Putt (UnitedHealthcare Pro Cycling Team) +56"
4. Robbie Hucker (IsoWhey Sports SwissWellness team) +57"
5. Steven Lampier (JLT Condor) s.t
1. Damien Howson (Orica-Scott) 8:46:12
2. Jai Hindley (Australia) +38"
3. Kenny Elissonde (Team Sky) +53"
4. Cameron Meyer (Australia) +1:08"
5. Michael Storer (Australia) +1:10"
6. Chris Froome (Team Sky) +1:12"