Strong start in Spain

20 Mar 2017

Strong start in Spain

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Team Sky got off to a good start at the Volta a Catalunya, enlivening the finish on day one before finishing safely in the pack.

With no recognised sprinter in the squad in Spain, the team paced the final run in off the Alt de Collsacreu from the front, keeping their general classification contenders in position ahead of a bunch sprint. Vasil Kiryienka was at his reliable best, keeping the pace high to discourage attacks.
 
Pete Kennaugh launched a brave bid inside the final two kilometres, opening up a small gap on the run into Calella. The Manxman was overhauled by the sprint trains inside the flamme rouge, with Davide Cimolai (FDJ) going on to take the win.
 
The Italian went toe to toe with Nacer Bouhanni (Cofidis) to win the sprint and move into an early race lead.
 
Geraint Thomas was the first Team Sky rider home in 19th, with the rest of the team, including Chris Froome and Mikel Landa, all finishing with the same time as the stage winner.

After the stage Sport Director Xabier Zandio gave TeamSky.com the lowdown on the day. He said: “It was a good day for us. It was a fast start but the sprinters' teams did a good job of making the pace at the front, so we felt that the race was under control.

“It was a little bit nervy in the finish when the attacks started, but we rode at the front and Pete was feeling strong and was able to have a go himself.

“Everyone got home safe and we were able to reserve our power for tomorrow’s team time trial. It will be an important stage for GC so the guys will rest now and make sure they are ready for this.” 
Xabier Zandio

Xabier Zandio

Everyone got home safe and we were able to reserve our power for tomorrow’s team time trial. It will be an important stage for GC so the guys will rest now and make sure they are ready for this.
The action continues on Tuesday with a key 41.3km team time trial test around Banyoles.
 
Stage one results:
1. Davide Cimolai (FDJ) 4:28:21
2. Nacer Bouhanni (Cofidis) s.t.
3. Kristian Sbaragli (Dimension Data) 
4. Dion Smith (Wanty-Groupe Goubert)
5. Andre Greipel (Lotto Soudal)
19. Geraint Thomas (Team Sky) 

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