Race: 2018 Tour de Hongrie, stage 2
Location: Velence / Székesfehérvár, Hungary
Distance: 190 kilometers
SZEKESFEHERVAR, HUNGARY – Hot weather dominated the peloton on Thursday at stage 2 of the Tour de Hongrie, and Team Novo Nordisk rose to beat it down during the 190km second stage from Velence to Szekesfehervar.
Time and time again teammates from the world’s first all-diabetes professional cycling team raced back to the team car to pick up bottles of water, Nuun and food for each other, spending their energy to keep Charles Planet safe at the front in third overall.
Efforts were rewarded when Planet struck out for a bonus second in the first intermediate sprint of the day, gaining an advantage that kept him steady in the General Classification while all around him rival teams sought the same.
With the temperature steady at 30ºC/86ºF under a cloudless sky and boiling sun, Planet kept his cool over more than four hours of racing, finishing at the front in a mass sprint and retaining his third place with three more days to go.
Teammate Andrea Peron finished seventh on the day, Planet was just behind him in 11th. Italian Matteo Moschetti won the stage, moving into second overall with a 10-second time bonus, while his countryman Manuel Belletti held on to the leader’s yellow jersey. Planet is now 13 seconds off the lead, and has a two second advantage over fourth.
The Tour de Hongrie continues on Friday with a flat sprint stage from Cegled to Hajduszoboszlo, at 206km the longest day expected at the 2018 Tour de Hongrie. Temperatures are rising and the wind is flat and listless, and with a General Classification separated by mere seconds, likely another tough day on the road.
“12 bottles for me today, and when it’s this hot I prefer water to be able to stay at the front and keep my focus. Charles and I were protected by the team all day, and we need it because it’s a tough fight in this race.”
“We put the team to work today, and we emptied two full coolers of bottles to keep them hydrated and cool. The race is full of tactical decisions, and the peloton is strong and evenly matched. For Andrea in the sprints and Charles in the GC we have a strong squad at the Tour de Hongrie.”
1st: Matteo Moschetti (Polartec-Kometa): 4:14:07
2nd: Attilio Viviani (Sangemini – MG.Kvis): same time as Moschetti
3rd: Manuel Belletti (Androni Giocattoli – Sidermec): ”
7th: Andrea Peron: “
(Photos: ©René Vigneron)