ARDOOIE, Netherlands (AFP) — German sprint specialist André Greipel of Omega-Pharma claimed his second successive stage victory on the Eneco Tour, finishing ahead of American Tyler Farrar (Garmin-Cervelo) and Norway’s Edvald Boasson Hagen (Sky) Wednesday.
“I know this finish well, it was the same as last year,” said 27-year-old Greipel, who recorded his eighth win of the season.
“My teammates set me up so well that I couldn’t be beaten.”
American Taylor Phinney (BMC) retained the race leader’s jersey after the 173.7km ride from Aalter to Ardooie. Edvald Boasson Hagen (Sky) moved four seconds closer to Phinney on the GC thanks to a time bonus for finishing third on the stage.
“It was a really nervous day, but the team took really good care of me,” Phinney said. “I was hoping to pay them back at the finish with a top-five or top-three placing. Unfortunately, I conceded some time, which was not part of the plan, but the team is really strong. I’m confident in my legs and looking forward to tomorrow.”
BMC assistant director Fabio Baldato said Thursday’s 191.2 km undulating stage will be Phinney’s greatest test since he took the lead with a win in the prologue.
“Tomorrow will be much more difficult,” Baldato said. “We hope Taylor keeps riding well and receiving good teamwork to keep the lead.”
Related: Profile of Thursday’s stage (pdf)
- 1. André Greipel, Omega Pharma-Lotto (olo), in 4:07:21
- 2. Tyler Farrar, Team Garmin-Cervelo (grm), at 0
- 3. Edvald Boasson Hagen, Sky Procycling (sky), at 0
- 4. Jean-pierre Drucker, Veranda’s Willems – Accent (vwa), at 0
- 5. Baden Cooke, Saxo Bank Sungard (sbs), at 0
- 1. Taylor Phinney, Bmc Racing Team (bmc), in 8:35:38
- 2. Edvald Boasson Hagen, Sky Procycling (sky), at 3
- 3. David Millar, Team Garmin-Cervelo (grm), at 8
- 4. Alex Rasmussen, Htc-Highroad (thr), at 9
- 5. André Greipel, Omega Pharma-Lotto (olo), at 10