Arnaud Demare wins stage two of 2013 Eneco Tour to take overall lead

Arnaud Demare (FDJ), winner of the inaugural RideLondon-Surrey Classic, continued his run of form with victory on stage two of the Eneco Tour to take the overall lead.

The Frenchman, who won on The Mall last Sunday, outsprinted world champion Philippe Gilbert (BMC Racing) and Garmin-Sharp’s Tyler Farrar on an uphill finish in Vorst.

Stage one winner, Mark Renshaw (Belkin Pro Cycling) suffered a mechanical on the run-in to the finish and was unable to contest the sprint, leaving Demare to move into the leader’s jersey, three seconds ahead of the Australian.

Arnaud Demare (FDJ) wins stage two of the 2013 Eneco Tour

While the opening stage was a gentle introduction to the week’s racing, stage two saw the peloton tackle six punchy climbs, including the 1.8km cobbled ramp of the Kruisberg, a regular feature of the Ronde van Vlaanderen.

Movistar’s Alex Dowsett crashed early on the stage and was forced to abandon with two dislocated fingers.

Four riders formed the day’s break – Gediminas Bagdonas (Ag2r La Mondiale), Mat Hayman (Team Sky) and Topsport Vlaanderen-Baloise duo Laurens De Vreese and Tim Declercq – and the quartet opened out an advantage of more than six minutes.

Bagdonas was dropped on the final climb, leaving Hayman, De Vreese and Declerq out front with a one minute lead with 10km remaining.

That set up a tense finale, with Orica-GreenEDGE, Belkin Pro Cycling, Argos-Shimano, BMC Racing, FDJ and Garmin-Sharp all contributing to the chase in a bid to setup a sprint finish, with the catch eventually made with two kilometres to the line.

Renshaw then suffered a mechanical which ruled him out of contention and saw him drop to second overall in the process, leaving Demare to jump past his rivals in the final 200m to secure victory and the race lead.

Eneco Tour 2013 – stage two – result

1) Arnaud Demare (FRA) – FDJ
2) Philippe Gilbert (BEL) – BMC Racing
3) Tyler Farrar (USA) – Garmin-Sharp
4) Marko Kump (SLO) – Saxo-Tinkoff
5) Alessandro Petacchi (ITA) – Omega Pharma-QuickStep
6) Jean-Pierre Drucker (LUX) – Accent Jobs-Wanty
7) Filippo Pozzato (ITA) – Lampre-Merida
8) Taylor Phinney (USA) – BMC Racing
9) Lars Boom (NED) – Belkin Pro Cycling
10) Matthieu Ladagnous (FRA) – FDJ

General classification

1) Arnaud Demare (FRA) – FDJ
2) Mark Renshaw (AUS) – Belkin Pro Cycling +3″
3) Philippe Gilbert (BEL) – BMC Racing +4″
4) Tyler Farrar (USA) – Garmin-Sharp +6″
5) Lars Boom (NED) – Belkin Pro Cycling +7″
6) Taylor Phinney (USA) BMC Racing +8″
7) André Greipel (GER) – Lotto-Belisol +9″
8) Alessandro Petacchi (ITA) – Omega Pharma-QuickStep +10″
9) Matthieu Ladagnous (FRA) – FDJ – same time
10) Jean-Pierre Drucker (LUX) – Accent Jobs-Wanty

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