Race: Aviva Tour of Britain, Stage 2
Start/Finish: Clitheroe/Colne, UK
Distance: 159.3 kilometers
Colne, England, UK — Team Novo Nordisk earned its best result to date at the Aviva Tour of Britain when Spaniard Javier Megias earned 10th place on the uphill finish.
“For me, the first two days are always the toughest,” Megias said. “I think I’ll feel better day by day. I hope this isn’t my best result of the race.”
Monday’s race saw the neutral start situated 2.4-kilometers before the first categorized climb of the day. Riders fought for position heading up the climb and on the race descent, Team Novo Nordisk’s Javier Megias was in second position as he aimed to get into an early breakaway. The race came back together and soon Peter Williams (One Pro Cycling) attacked solo and built a gap of more than four and a half minutes. Eventually another rider bridged up, but the duo was caught as they ascended Pendle Big End. The climb splintered the peloton into several sections with a strong eight-man group getting out front followed by a 40-man chase that included Megias and teammate David Lozano. Following the final intermediate sprint, the front group split with Petr Vakoc (Etixx-Quick Step) setting off alone. The Czech rider held off the chase to take the win with Megias finishing nine seconds behind. Lozano finished in 16th position.
“I tried to form the break coming off the first climb and found myself in great position at the bottom of the descent, but it is hard to get in the break,” Megias said. “With only one rider out front, David and I knew the break wasn’t going to survive, so we focused on staying near the front. On the second to last climb, when the whole race split, David and I had great position. Heading to the finish, I tried to sprint, but my legs weren’t what I would have liked. I still got top 10, so I’m happy.”
“I was hoping for good legs at the end and I had them, but I’m not fast enough to fight with these guys in a sprint,” Lozano said. “It feels good to have my form and able to really race. It makes it fun.”
Results: Petr Vakoc (Etixx-Quick Step) soloed to the win seven seconds ahead of Juan Jose Lobato (Movistar Team). Edvald Boasson Hagen (MTN-Qhubeka) rounded out the podium.
Team Novo Nordisk continues racing on Tuesday with Stage 3 of the Aviva Tour of Britain. The 216-km stage begins in Cockermouth and features three intermediate sprints and three categorized climbs late in the stage before a downhill run into Kelso.