Abu Dhabi Tour Stage 2: De Marchi’s Day in the Breakaway24. February 2017, Abu Dhabi (UAE) — Road Team
Abu Dhabi Tour headed to the city on Stage 2 with Alessandro de Marchi pushing the peloton all the way to the end as part of the day’s breakaway before Marcel Kittel (Quick-Step Floors Cycling Team) took the honors in the bunch sprint for the line.
De Marchi was part of an early move of six riders which went clear after less than ten minutes of racing on the flat, 153km route.
After allowing yesterday’s breakaway to extend a lead of almost six minutes, the peloton kept a close eye on the challengers, and their advantage hovered around two minutes for most of the day.
As the riders settled into the final 50km of the stage, and with another bunch sprint expected, the gap to the breakaway started to fall steadily and dipped under one minute as the race hit the most exposed roads of the stage.
Eventually, with teams organizing themselves into position, the peloton began to reel in the breakaway rider by rider.
However, De Marchi was not ready to concede just yet and, alongside Marco Canola (Nippo - Vini Fantini), he held onto an advantage right up until 2km to go when attention quickly turned to the final battle between the sprinters.
Once again all eight BMC Racing Team riders crossed safely with the peloton as the race heads into tomorrow's Queen Stage and the summit finish at Jebel Hafeet.
Quotes from the Finish Line
Alessandro De Marchi:
“We knew that it would be hard for a breakaway to go all the way to finish today. There was maybe a 1/1000 chance of it happening, but you never know if you don’t try. It was relatively easy to find the breakaway, but it was a perhaps a bit harder to find the collaboration needed to push forward as much as possible.”
“I am happy with my shape and how I was feeling and being part of the breakaway was another way to enjoy my day racing. I fought right to the very end as once we were that close to the line, I thought it would be stupid not to give it a go. In cycling sometimes you only have once chance, and you have to play for it when you can. It is always the same, and we will continue to try our best here.”
Abu Dhabi Tour
Stage 2: Abu Dhabi - Al Maryah Island > Abu Dhabi - Al Marina, 153km
Top 3: 1. Marcel Kittel (Quick-Step Floors Cycling Team) 2. Caleb Ewan (ORICA-Scott) 3. Mark Cavendish (Team Dimension Data)
BMC Racing Team Top 3: 53. Nicolas Roche 60. Tejay van Garderen 75. Manuel Quinziato
BMC Racing Team Flickr Gallery
See photos from the race.