Milan - Belgian champion Jens Debusschere has outsprinted Slovakian Peter Sagan
as Mark Cavendish narrowly avoided a crash in the finale of the 153km
second stage of Tirreno-Adriatico from Camaiore to Cascina on Thursday.
of the Lotto-Belisol team, powered to victory in just over
three-and-a-half hours after keeping ahead of a crash in the home
straight which notably took down Sky's Italian Elia Viviani and took
British sprint king Cavendish out of victory contention.
Adriano Malori, who won the opening stage time-trial on Wednesday,
retained the overall race lead with Sagan now in second place on the
same time, thanks to a finishing bonus, with Swiss Fabian Cancellara
third, one second behind.
The overall race favourites, Alberto
Contador, Vincenzo Nibali and Nairo Quintana avoided the carnage and
kept their powder dry, notably for the uphill finish on stage three as
well as a much hillier stage four on Saturday.
A day after beating
Cancellara by just one second to win the opening stage time-trial over
5.4km, Malori's race lead was never really in danger with the sprinters
and their teams keen to set up a bunch finish on the home straight of
A seven-man breakaway was allowed to form early on but it
was kept on a relatively tight rein as the bunch raced over mainly flat
terrain towards the Tuscan town, about 60km west of Florence.
last three riders were reeled in with 15 km to race, setting up an
ideal scenario for a classic bunch sprint to the finish line.
after a first crash, 11.5 km out from the finish, took down several
riders including Yaroslav Popovych and Canadian Svein Tuft, disaster
struck in the final 200 metres.
The victory hopes of Viviani and
British sprint king Cavendish (Etixx-QuickStep) were ended when the pair
crossed wheels. Viviani came crashing down, splaying several riders
across the road, and Cavendish slowed down to effectively take himself
out of victory contention.
Debusschere powered up the middle to
beat Sagan by a bike's length with Ireland's Sam Bennett taking third
ahead of Russian Alexander Porsev and American Tyler Farrar.
Results from the second stage of Tirreno-Adriatico, a 153 km ride from Camaiore to Cascina on Thursday:
1. Jens Debusschere (BEL) Lotto-Belisol 3hr 30min 18sec, 2. Peter Sagan (SVK) same time, 3. Sam Bennett (IRL) s.t., 4. Alexander Porsev (RUS) s.t., 5. Tyler Farrar (USA) s.t., 6. Magnus Cort Nielsen (DEN) s.t., 7. Roger Kluge (GER) s.t., 8. Nicola Ruffoni (ITA) s.t., 9. Zakkari Dempster (AUS) s.t., 10. Mark Renshaw (AUS) s.t.
1. Adriano Malori (ITA) Movistar 3hr 36min 22sec, 2. Peter Sagan (SVK) same time, 3. Fabian Cancellara (SUI) at 01sec, 4. Greg van Avermaet (BEL) 2, 5. Matthias Brandle (AUT) s.t., 6. Maciej Bodnar (POL) s.t., 7. Daniel Oss (ITA) 4, 8. Ramunas Navardauskas (LTU) 5, 9. Steven Cummings (GBR) 6, 9. Peter Sagan (SVK) s.t., 10. Martijn Keizer (NED) 7