The Netherlands’s Tom Domoulin Retains Leader’s Jersey
RED DEER, ALBERTA – Sweden’s Jonas Alstrand of Team Giant-Shimano outsprinted The Netherland’s Theo Bos of Belkin-Pro Cycling to win Stage 2 of the Tour of Alberta, presented by ATB Financial, at Red Deer Thursday.
Alstrand’s win also helped teammate Tom Domoulin retain the Province of Alberta Leader’s Jersey. Germany’s Ruben Zepuntke of the Bissell Development Team, who entered the day in second place, 13 seconds behind Domoulin, gained four seconds via a four-second time bonus at the finish line.
“The plan worked out very well for us, and I’m glad to stay in the leader’s jersey. And, we got the stage win,” said Domoulin. “But we burned a lot of energy. Our team is very tired from the chase. We have Jonas to thank for a great finish.”
Alstrand, Bos and Zepuntke drag-raced the final 500 metres with a downhill sprint topping off at close to 80 kilometres per hour.
“That was a fast one,” Alstrand said, referring to the final run-in. “I stayed in the wheels on the final climb (about 3 km from the finish) and made it over the top in the top ten. The run in was real quick and I was able to follow the wheel of Bos and another, then wait until 200m to go to launch my sprint.”
The stage was one of the fastest in the two-year history of the event, averaging 47.8 kilometres an hour (29.7 mph). A long breakaway instituted by Orica-GreenEDGE’s Simon Yates of Great Britain went clear for most of the second-half of the race. American Kiel Reijnen of UnitedHealthcare Pro Cycling, Yates and eventual breakaway companion, Ben King of Garmin-Sharp, who bridged coming into the three-lap circuit in Red Deer, stayed clear until 3 kilometres remaining in the race.
“I was really trying to steal the overall lead more than go for a stage win,” Reijnen said. “Ben and I were giving it a go and weren’t that short. The race was real fast today.”
The American riding for UnitedHealthcare Pro Cycling is coming off a stage win and overall Sprint Points jersey win at last month’s USA Pro Challenge in Colorado, U.S.A. Reijnen and King entered the race both 26 seconds behind race leader Domoulin.
Domoulin’s lead is now nine seconds over Zepuntke, the revelation of this year’s Tour of Alberta. Domoulin won Tuesday’s Prologue opener in Calgary while Zepuntke won Wednesday’s rainy stage at Lethbridge. However, it was Alstrand’s day after Team Giant-Shimano chased all the day to ensure Domoulin’s continued race lead.
Friday’s Stage 3 will start in Wetaskiwin and route northerly through sprint lines in New Sarepta and Fort Saskatchewan before a unique finish on an airstrip at the Edmonton Garrison. The 156.9 kilometre race will finish with a flat fast finish that should again feature the race’s top sprinters. Time bonuses of 10, 6, and 4 seconds respectively will be awarded to the Top 3 finishers.
The Tour of Alberta presented by ATB Financial is Canada’s biggest professional cycling stage race and ranked as one of the highest outside of Europe. It is sanctioned by the Union Cyclist Internationale, international governing body for the sport and the Canadian Cycling Association, the national governing body for the sport in Canada.
Coverage continues on Rogers SportsNet One Friday from 2:00 to 4:00 pm MDT. The event is being televised to 121 countries. The elite, all-professional field is down to 113 cyclists from the 118 that started Tuesday. Athletes from 19 countries are represented in the race.
Province of Alberta Leader’s Jersey
Tom Dumoulin (NED), Team Giant-Shimano
SUBWAY® Sprint Points Jersey
Ruben Zepuntke (GER), Bissell Development
Go Auto King of the Mountain Jersey
Simon Yates (GBR), Orica-GreenEDGE
ATB Financial Best Young Rider Jersey
Tom Dumoulin (NED), Team Giant-Shimano
Pomeroy Inn & Suites Best Canadian Jersey
Ryan Anderson (CAN), Optum p/b Kelly Benefit Strategies
Simson Maxwell Power Jersey
Kiel Reijnen (USA), UnitedHealthcare Pro Cycling
General Classification (Top 5)
1.Tom Dumoulin (NED), Giant-Shimano, 3.24’09”
2.Ruben Zepuntke (GER), Bissell Development Team, + :09sec.
3.Serghei Tvetcov (ROU), Jelly Belly p/b MAXXIS, + :14 sec.
4.Tom Danielson (USA), Garmin-Sharp, +17 sec.
5.Ryan Anderson (CAN), OptumHealth p/b Kelly Benefits, +18 sec.