Tour of Oman Stage 1: 6th Place for Van Avermaet16. February 2016, Muscat, Oman — Road Team
Greg Van Avermaet crossed the line in sixth place in the opening stage of the Tour of Oman, which saw Bob Jungels (Eitxx-Quickstep) take the win.
It was the short, but steep Al Jissah climb five kilometers before the finish which proved decisive, splitting the peloton and leaving a final lead group of 16 riders, including Van Avermaet.
Daniel Oss demonstrated fine form as the first rider to reach the top of the climb before the final run into the finish.
Jungels attacked with two kilometers to go to take the solo win, six seconds ahead of Serge Pauwels (Dimension Data) and eight seconds ahead of Van Avermaet’s group.
“It was a really good stage for me and I was hoping to win. I was third or fourth over the climb but then we had nobody to control the race and then the attacks started. Three or four guys went away and then the race was over from there. It’s disappointing to not have sprinted for first place,” Van Avermaet said.
“I’m really happy with my form because I was there with the good climbers over the short climb.”
In his first race since the Santos Tour Down Under three weeks ago, Richie Porte finished 3,24 minutes behind Jungels.
“It was quite a tough stage as it was fast and quite fast. It wasn’t really unexpected that I lost time. I didn’t really come with any ambitions apart from trying to get through the race and trying to get some form out of it. It’s a great race for getting good kilometers in the legs and for me the big target next is Paris-Nice,” Porte explained.
“I’ll be taking it day by day as we said from the start.”
Stage 2 tomorrow will see the peloton ride 162 kilometers from Omantel Head Office to a difficult uphill finish in Quriyat.
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