Tour Colombia: Juan Molano sprints early, takes stage 2
Sebastián Molano (UAE Team Emirates) held off Álvaro Hodeg (Deceuninck-Quickstep) and Itamar Einhorn (Israel Start-Up Nation) in the final meters of Wednesday’s flat, 152.4km stage.
This is Molano’s second stage win at the Tour Colombia. In 2019, he won stage 3, ahead of Julian Alaphilippe (Deceuninck–Quick-Step) and Diego Ochoa (Manzana-Postobon).
“To return with a win after such a long period of time, after one year, it has a joy that you can’t imagine. To return to do the same, I hope I can continue down this road like I said right now, the moment will come so when it does you need to enjoy it.”
A break of ten escaped in the first few kilometers, and managed to gain a maximum of 3:35 on the peloton.
Brayan Sánchez (Team Medellin), from the break, took both intermediate sprints.
A crash near 40km to go, at the final intermediate sprint, had some riders chasing onto the back of the main group.
Just inside of the 5km kite, the remains of the break was absorbed.
“It was a beautiful moment, to get my first win with my new team and doing so here in Colombia – it’s fantastic,” Molano said. “[Fernando] Gaviria unfortunately was not well. I had a big responsibly and I was able to repay the enormous trust given to me by the team.
With the stage 2 win, Molano now leads the points classification.
“I felt great all day, on the climbs my legs were good and I found myself secure in the finishing straight for the sprint. The work of my team-mates getting there was perfect all day. I want to thank the team who kept me going throughout the stage.”
“I knew the finish very well today, I train all the time here and so I knew when the 300m, 200, 100m line was, I knew at 1km that my form was good and that I knew the finish well which is good so that you don’t go too early or too late and so that helped a lot.”
Israeli Itamar Einhorn was thrilled to make his first podium. “In many ways I can’t believe that I am the first Israeli rider to ever get a podium in a UCI race. But of course, I knew that this is a milestone that I could reach and this was actually my goal this season.”
Stage 3, on Thursday, is an undulating 177km, and will be another test for the sprinters, as the final 35km are relatively flat.
Stage 2 Results
1. Sebastián Molano (UAE Team Emirates): 3:12:09
2. Alvaro Hodeg (Deceuninck-Quickstep): at S.T.
3. Itamar Einhorn (Israel Start-Up Nation): at S.T.
1. Jonathan Caicedo (EF Pro Cycling): 7:19:30
2. Sergio Higuita (EF Pro Cycling): at S.T.
3. Daniel Martinez (EF Pro Cycling): at S.T.