Richie Porte (Trek-Segafredo) stormed away on the final climb to take victory by five seconds from Team Sunweb’s Robert Power and Simon Yates (Mitchelton-Scott). The addition of a ten second win bonus gives the Tasmanian a six second lead over defending champion Daryl Impey with two stages to come.
A tricky stage with a testing finish tempted out those with a penchant for an uphill sprint. The stage and race lead went to Lotto Soudal’s Caleb Ewan who closed down and passed defending champion Daryl Impey (Mitchelton-Scott) on the run to the line. Nathan Haas (Cofidis) held for third. Unfortunately, a crash inside the last 3km left some race hopefuls with more than a bruise or two.
The first WorldTour stage race of the year kicked off in fine style with victory for Sam Bennett and his oh-so-slick Deceuninck-Quickstep team. The Irish champion pipped Jasper Philippsen (UAE Team-Emirates) with Erik Baska (BORA-hansgrohe) rounding out the podium.