Race: Dubai Tour, Stage 2
Start/Finish: Dubai International Marine Club/Atlantis Hotel on Palm Jumeirah. United Arab Emirates
Distance: 187 kilometers
Dubai, UAE — Thursday’s race saw a five-man breakaway escape early into the 187-kilometer race that began at the Dubai International Marine Club. Two of the riders dropped from the break following the first intermediate sprint. The remaining trio built a gap of 5:30. With 60-km remaining, Rafaa Chtioui (Skydive Dubai) attacked the break and continued off the front solo until the final 10 kilometers. As anticipated, a sprint finish ensued in front of the famed Atlantis hotel on Palm Jumeirah with Elia Viviani (Team Sky) taking the win.
Team Novo Nordisk’s Chris Williams experienced a late race crash after several riders in front of him took a wrong turn on the course and suddenly stopped. The Australian was fine and caught back on to the peloton.
“The last 20 kilometers today did not go to plan,” Team Novo Nordisk’s Chris Williams explained. “Our sprinter, Martijn, punctured just as the speed picked up for the finale. A number of speed bumps and corners made it difficult for him to make it back to the front group. With 12 km to go, a group of riders, including myself, missed a turn, which further held up the convoy. Martijn made it back with five kilometers to go, but he had spent too much energy to contest the sprint. Some days you get lucky, some days you do not.”
Results: Elia Viviani (Team Sky) sprinted to the win ahead of Mark Cavendish (Etixx-Quick Step) and Andrea Guardini (Astana Pro Team).
Team Novo Nordisk, the world’s first all-diabetes pro cycling team, continues racing at the Dubai Tour on Friday with Stage 3. The 205-kilometer stage serves as the race’s queen stage with two intermediate sprints and an uphill finish with maximum gradients of 17 percent to Hatta Dam.