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Tirreno-Adriatico 2015: Jens Debusschere sprints to stage two win

Elia Viviani crashes hard after collision with Mark Cavendish in finale

Jens Debusschere (Lotto-Soudal) won the first road stage of Tirreno-Adriatico after Mark Cavendish (Etixx-QuickStep) and Elia Viviani (Team Sky) were involved in a big crash in the finale.

Belgian champion Debusschere took the victory after a hectic finale, but there was concern for Viviani who hit the deck hard after touching wheels with Cavendish as they looked to join the sprinting action on the front.

Jens Debusschere won the first road stage of this year’s Tirreno-Adriatico (pic: Sirotti)

Cavendish dropped his chain as he and lead-out man Mark Renshaw bid to accelerate to the front, and his inadvertent change of line took Viviani out behind him.

Debusschere remained unperturbed by the chaos behind him, however, outsprinting Peter Sagan (Tinkoff-Saxo) and Sam Bennett (Bora-Argon 18) to take the stage win.

There had been no shortage of riders looking for air time in the break on the first road stage of this year’s Race of the Two Seas, which despite its flat profile proved to be a chaotic day.

Cristiano Salerno and Patrick Konrad (Bora-Argon 18), Edoardo Zardini (Bardiani-CSF), Danilo Wyss (BMC Racing), Carlos Quintero and Jorge Castiblanco (Colombia) and Martijn Keizer (Team LottoNL-Jumbo) were all in the group to go clear.

With Etixx-QuickStep among the team on the front of the bunch, their lead never became unmanageable however as one-by-one they returned to the bunch to set up a sprint finish.

A number of crashes in the peloton had set the warning tone, however, Adam Yates (Orica-GreenEDGE) among those requiring a trip to the medical car after one incident just short of the 10km to go banner.

At the front, MTN-Qhubeka took control with Edvald Boasson Hagen winding up a huge lead-out for Tyler Farrar under the flamme rouge.

Cavendish was also handily-placed, with Zdenek Stybar and Mark Renshaw barking instructions to each other, but the crash had made for a messy bunch sprint.

Mark Cavendish suffered a mechanical as he fought for position in the bunch sprint, the resultant crash taking down Elia Viviani (pic: Sirotti)

And as the Manxman looked to jump to the front on Renshaw’s wheel, his mechanical left Viviani helpless to avoid a tumble – Cavendish himself only just staying upright.

With two of the in-form sprinters therefore out of contention, it was left to Debusschere to lead the sprint out from the front.

Sagan and Bennett chased hard but the Belgian champion was too strong, the Slovakian consequently missing out on the blue jersey – which Adriano Malori (Movistar ) retained – by the smallest of margins.

Tirreno-Adriatico 2015: stage two – result

1) Jens Debusschere (BEL) – Lotto-Soudal – 3.30.18hrs
2) Peter Sagan (SVK) – Tinkoff-Saxo – ST
3) Sam Bennett (IRL) – Bora-Argon 18
4) Aleksandr Porsev (RUS) – Katusha
5) Tyler Farrar (USA) – MTN-Qhubeka
6) Magnus Cort Nielsen (DEN) – Orica-GreenEDGE
7) Roger Kluge (GER) – IAM Cycling
8) Nicola Ruffoni (ITA) – Bardiani-CSF
9) Zak Dempster (AUS) – Bora-Argon 18
10) Mark Renshaw (AUS) – Etixx-QuickStep

General classification

1) Adriano Malori (ITA) – Movistar – 3.36.22hrs
2) Peter Sagan (SVK) – Tinkoff-Saxo – ST
3) Fabian Cancellara (SUI) – Trek Factory Racing +1”
4) Greg van Avermaet (BEL) – BMC Racing +2”
5) Matthias Brandle (AUT) – IAM Cycling – ST
6) Maciej Bodnar (POL) – Tinkoff-Saxo
7) Daniel Oss (ITA) – BMC Racing +4”
8) Ramunas Navardauskas (LTU) – Cannondale-Garmin +5”
9) Steve Cummings (GBR) – MTN-Qhubeka +6”
10) Martijn Keizer (NED) – LottoNL-Jumbo +7”

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