Vuelta a Espana 2017 : Stage 2 – Lampaert leaps into red

Quick Step Floors tore the peloton apart in a wind-blasted finale and Yves Lampaert put his TT skills to great use, leaping away under the flamme rouge to claim stage victory and the race lead. Teammate Matteo Trentin followed up for second place with Adam Blythe scoring Aqua Blue their first ever Grand Tour podium finish. It was a full gas, get-to-the-front, day of nerves and for the GC men. Vincenzo Nibali (Bahrain-Merida) was the most alert, finishing in the same group as the winner to claw back some of the seconds he lost yesterday.

Rider of the Race

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Who else could it be but Yves Lampaert and his gutsy attack with 1km to go. Not only did the Belgian TT champion deny the sprinters one of the very few chances they will get, but he celebrated a double victory salute with a teammate and graced the podium thrice in true #capsnothats style.

I’m not sure about the rhyme, but I was charmed by the podium prize. A little bird house? A home for a hamster?

Yves might be the man in red, but this was a team effort. A whimsical Juan Antonio Flecha explained in his stage summary on Eurosport: “Nobody knows when the wind will blow. But we do know that when it does blow – Quick Step Floors will be there.”  They were, and when the opportune moment arrived they delivered with Julian Alaphilippe putting in a huge pull to cause the split.

During the race we planned that if we could make an echelon, we would try in the last 10km. We went full from last three kilometres, then we were away with Alaphilippe and a few guys in the break. After that, just before the roundabout, they shouted at me, ‘go go go!’ I knew I could ride one kilometre very fast and it worked out.

There really is something about the Quicksteppers at a Grand Tour that makes your racing heart beat just that little bit faster. Podiums galore and joyous in their celebrations.  I do have one teeny suggestion for them, however – could they start with the attacking a little earlier please?

Tweet of the day

It was a strange day of racing, with high pace and no breakaway. Trek-Segafredo’s Markel Irizar spent most of the day taking the wind on the nose of the peloton and was awarded the combative rider prize. Markel loves to talk and is affectionately known as Radio Basque

Results

Top 5 stage 

1 Yves Lampaert (Quick Step Floors) 4:36:13

2 Matteo Trentin (Quick Step Floors) same time

3 Adam Blythe (Aqua Blue Sport) s/t

4 Edward Theuns (Trek-Segafredo) s/t

5 Sacha Modolo (UAE Team Emirates) s/t

Top 5 GC 

1 Yves Lampaert  (Quick Step Floors) 4:52:07

2 Matteo Trentin (Quickstep Floors) +0.01

3 Daniel Oss (BMC) +0.03

4 Tejay van Garderen (BMC) +0.17

5 Nicolas Roche (BMC) same time

All the jerseys

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Leader: Yves Lampaert  (Quick Step Floors)

Points: Yves Lampaert  (Quick Step Floors)

KOM: Nicolas Roche (BMC)

Combined: Daniel Oss (BMC)

Team Classification: Quick Step Floors

Best Young Rider: Bob Jungels (Quick Step Floors)

Most Aggressive Rider: Markel Irazir

For race reviews, go to CyclingNews; official La Vuelta website is here

Header image: Yves Lampaert – Quick Step © Unipublic / Photogomez Sport (race website)

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