Wagner sprints to West Vlaanderen stage 2; Keukeleire holds lead
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Saturday, March 06, 2010

Wagner sprints to West Vlaanderen stage 2; Keukeleire holds lead

by Ben Atkins at 11:56 AM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Race Reports and Results
 

Robert Wagner (Skil-Shimano) won stage number 2 of the Driedaagse van West-Vlaanderen – the Three Days of West Flanders – into Handzame as it once again finished in a sprint. He beat Kuurne-Brussel-Kuurne winner Bobbie Traksel (Vacansoleil) into second, and yesterday’s stage 1 winner Jens Keukeleire (Cofidis) into third.

The early kilometres of the stage were ridden at a fast pace as many escape attempts were neutralised by Keukeleire’s Cofidis team. Finally, after 120km, Niko Eeckhout (An Post-Sean Kelly), Joost van Leijen (Vacansoleil) and Nicki Sörensen (Saxo Bank) escaped.

Eeckhout was soon dropped by his two companions and recaptured by the peloton. This was the signal for Pieter Vanspeybrouck (Topsport Vlaanderen-Mercator) and Floris Goesinnen (Skil-Shimano) to attack, making four up front.

The peloton was happy to allow the quartet to stay off the front for a while, but before long the sprinters’ teams reeled them back in to set up a second consecutive bunch sprint.

Due to time bonuses on the line, Keukeleire holds on to his race lead.

Tomorrow’s third and final stage will be 194.5km from Middelkerke on the North Sea coast to Ichtegem. The course takes in the climb of the Kemmelberg, which features strongly in the Gent-Wevelgem, but with three flat 10km circuits at the finish the stage will likely end in a sprint once again.

Result stage 2
1. Robert Wagner (Ger) Skil-Shimano
2. Bobbie Traksel (Ned) Vacansoleil
3. Jens Keukeleire (Bel) Cofidis

Standings after stage 2
1. Jens Keukeleire (Bel) Cofidis

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