Tour de France 2016: Peter Sagan wins stage two to claim race lead - Road Cycling UK

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Tour de France 2016: Peter Sagan wins stage two to claim race lead

World champion to swap rainbow bands for yellow jersey

World champion Peter Sagan (Tinkoff) will swap his rainbow jersey for the yellow jersey of Tour de France race leader after winning the uphill finish on stage two in Cherbourg.

Great Britain’s Mark Cavendish (Dimension Data) rode the stage in the yellow jersey for the first time in his career, after winning on Utah Beach on Saturday, but the uphill finish was always more likely to suit rouleurs like Sagan than the pure sprinters.

And so it proved as the Slovakian powered clear of Julian Alaphilippe (Etixx-QuickStep) and Alejandro Valverde (Movistar) with a well-timed sprint, after breakaway rider Jasper Stuyven (Trek-Segafredo) was caught inside the final kilometre.

Peter Sagan will swap his rainbow bands for the yellow jersey after winning stage two of the 2016 Tour de France (pic: Sirotti)

Sagan’s team-mate and GC contender Alberto Contador suffered another nightmare day, however, crashing onto the same shoulder he injured on stage one and ceding 48 seconds to rivals Chris Froome (Team Sky) and Nairo Quintana (Movistar).

Richie Porte (BMC Racing) also lost time after an ill-timed puncture late in the stage, with the Australian former Team Sky man already now nearly two minutes behind his GC rivals.

The day’s break was four strong when it formed three kilometres into the stage, with King of the Mountains leader Paul Voss (Bora-Argon 18) bidding to earn another day in the polka dot jersey.

Team-mate Cesare Benedetti, Vegard Breen (Fortuneo-Vital Concept) and Stuyven also went clear and it was the Trek-Segafredo who ultimately claimed the climbing honours and a day in the polka dot jersey.

Mark Cavendish rode in the yellow jersey for the first time (pic: Sirotti)

As Contador and several other riders in the peloton crashed, however, and with Cavendish’s Dimension Data team leading the peloton the break began to look more and more dangerous.

A brief flurry in the peloton at the intermediate sprint saw Andre Greipel (Lotto-Soudal) once again take the intermediate sprinting honours – Benedetti having crossed the sprint first from the break.

Sagan’s team-mate and GC contender Alberto Contador suffered another nightmare day, however, crashing onto the same shoulder he injured on stage one and ceding 48 seconds to rivals Chris Froome (Team Sky) and Nairo Quintana (Movistar).

Richie Porte (BMC Racing) also lost time after an ill-timed puncture late in the stage, with the Australian former Team Sky man already now nearly two minutes behind his GC rivals.

The day’s break was four strong when it formed three kilometres into the stage, with King of the Mountains leader Paul Voss (Bora-Argon 18) bidding to earn another day in the polka dot jersey.

Team-mate Cesare Benedetti, Vegard Breen (Fortuneo-Vital Concept) and Stuyven also went clear and it was the Trek-Segafredo who ultimately claimed the climbing honours and a day in the polka dot jersey.

As Contador and several other riders in the peloton crashed, however, and with Cavendish’s Dimension Data team leading the peloton the break began to look more and more dangerous.

A brief flurry in the peloton at the intermediate sprint saw Andre Greipel (Lotto-Soudal) once again take the intermediate sprinting honours – Benedetti having crossed the sprint first from the break.

Sagan was initially unaware he had won the stage, thinking breakaway riders had already finished (pic: Sirotti)

Cavendish, 24 points behind Sagan, will wear the green jersey on stage two, his time in the yellow jersey now over after he finished 1.49 behind the world champion.

It means a maiden stint in the yellow jersey for Sagan, meanwhile, with an eight-second lead over second-placed Alaphilippe, who pulls on the white jersey.

Tour de France 2016: stage two – result

1) Peter Sagan (SVK) – Tinkoff – 4.20.51hrs
2) Julian Alaphilippe (FRA) – Etixx-QuickStep – ST
3) Alejandro Valverde (ESP) – Movistar
4) Daniel Martin (IRL) – Etixx-QuickStep
5) Michael Matthews (AUS) – Orica-BikeExchange
6) Wilco Kelderman (NED) – LottoNL-Jumbo
7) Tony Gallopin (FRA) – Lotto-Soudal
8) Greg van Avermaet (BEL) – BMC Racing
9) Bauke Mollema (NED) – Trek-Segafredo
10) Chris Froome (GBR) – Team Sky

General classification

1) Peter Sagan (SVK) – Tinkoff – 8.34.42hrs
2) Julian Alaphilippe (FRA) – Etixx-QuickStep +8”
3) Alejandro Valverde (ESP) – Movistar +10”
4) Warren Barguil (FRA) – Giant-Alpecin +14”
5) Chris Froome (GBR) – Team Sky – ST
6) Greg van Avermaet (BEL) – BMC Racing
7) Nairo Quintana (COL) – Movistar
8) Roman Kreuziger (CZE) – Tinkoff
9) Simon Gerrans (AUS) – Orica-BikeExchange
10) Daniel Martin (IRL) – Etixx-QuickStep

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