Vuelta a Espana 2016: Stage 5 – second win for Meersman, Atapuma rests in red

Stage winner Gianni Meersman was superbly steered by teammate Zdenek Stybar through a nervous crash-marred finale, launching his sprint from 200 metres to take his second victory in this Vuelta. Fabio Felline and Kevin Reza, who had too much ground to make up, rounded out the podium. Race leader Darwin Atapuma and the other leading contenders dodged the two crashes within last 3km to finish safely in the pack.
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Vuelta a Espana 2016: Stage 2- Meersman wins, Kwiatkowski in red

Stage two and a rare opportunity for the sprinters. Quickest of the bunch in a frantic, crash-disrupted finale was Gianni Meersman, who once launched from his Etixx-Quick Step train never looked like being caughtBora Argon’s Michael Schwarzmann just edged out Magnus Cort (Orica-BikeExchange) for second. Michal Kwiatkowski held his nerve at the sharp end to take fourth place and ensured the red jersey stayed with Sky. Continue reading

Vuelta stage 5: ‘Bling’ does his thing

Stage 5: Sober to Lago de Sanabria, 168.4km

Finally a stage for the sprinters, and after his team laid the groundwork Michael ‘Bling’ Matthews (Orica GreenEDGE) launched his sprint with 200 metres to go and held off Maximiliano Ariel Richeze (Lampre-Merida) and Gianni Meersman (Omega Pharma-Quick Step) on the slight uphill ramp to the finish. Yesterday the 22-year-old was on the podium, today he was astride it claiming his first grand tour victory in some style.

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