Tour of Oman Stage 1: Hectic Bunch Sprint14. February 2017, Muscat (Oman) — Road Team
The opening day of the Tour of Oman finished with a predicted bunch sprint, won by Alexander Kristoff (Team Katusha- Alpecin), which saw all of BMC Racing Team’s riders cross the line safely.
A five-rider breakaway went clear after 10km of racing, opening a 3’30” advantage at the halfway point of the 176.5km stage.
After passing the feed zone the peloton picked up the chase and eventually brought the group back 10km before the finish line.
The battle for positioning ahead of the sprint caused chaos in the race, and Jempy Drucker experienced some bad luck in the finale to prevent him from contesting the sprint.
Quotes from the Finish Line
“The team did a good job in the finale with positioning, but somebody hit my front wheel so I lost a spoke and my wheel was touching the brakes also. So I wasn’t able to sprint which is a pity, but that’s racing. At the beginning I wasn’t feeling so great but after two or three hours I was getting better and better. Still five more days to come.”
Greg Van Avermaet
“It was a warm day but it was an easy day, a sprinter’s day. It was good to start like this as from tomorrow onwards it gets harder. So we’ll see how it goes then.”
Valerio Piva, Sports Director
“The plan for today was to pay attention to the wind. It was clear that Katusha-Alpecin and Quickstep-Floors wanted to go for the sprint, so they let five riders go clear. We stayed quiet in the bunch with the plan to go for the sprint with Jempy Drucker, with Daniel Oss as the leadout. It was perfect and at 6km to go we started to move up. Unfortunately, Jempy was hit by someone in the front wheel and was taken out of the sprint. It’s not a big drama as it’s the first day, but it’s a pity for Jempy as there are not a lot of sprint stages here. Everyone was safe to the finish which was important.
Tour of Oman
Stage 1: Al Sawadi Beach > Naseem Park (176.5km)
Top 3: 1. Alexander Kristoff (Team Katusha-Alpecin), 2. Kristian Sbaragli (Dimension Data), 3. Sonny Colbrelli (Bahrain Merida Pro Cycling Team).