Giro d’Italia: Farrar wins crash marred stage 2
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Sunday, May 09, 2010

Giro d’Italia: Farrar wins crash marred stage 2

by Ben Atkins at 11:33 AM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Giro d'Italia, Race Reports and Results
 
American builds on his Classics success

Tyler FarrarTyler Farrar (Garmin-Transitions) won stage 2 of the Giro d’Italia between Amsterdam and Utrecht. He beat Matt Goss (HTC-Columbia) and Fabio Sabatini (Liquigas-Doimo) at the end of a 210km stage that was peppered with crashes.

The rain that fell on yesterday’s Amsterdam time trial had gone away, but the riders started under overcast skies. Almost immediately the expected breakaway escaped with Paul Voss (Milram), Stefano Pirazzi (Colnago-CSF Inox), Mauro Facci (Quick Step) and Rich Flens (Rabobank) going clear. Between them the four riders quickly opened up a lead of more than 5 minutes over the peloton led by the Sky team of maglia rosa wearer Bradley Wiggins.

After 100km the leading quartet had almost 6 minutes over the peloton, with Sky quite happy to let the four riders have their time on the TV. The British team soon decided that enough was enough though and began to accelerate to bring the gap down.

With less than 60km to go Facci could no longer match the pace of the other three and was briefly dropped as the break approached the Traguardo Volante intermediate sprint point. Back in the peloton the chase was disrupted by a series of crashes, mostly caused by the plethora of traffic islands and other traffic obstacles that are typical of Dutch roads. One such crash brought down Wiggins and a number of his Sky teammates; Farrar was also brought down in one crash but was brought back to the peloton by four of his Garmin-Transitions teammates.

With just over 30km to go Flens, who comes from just north of Amsterdam, attacked the other three breakaway riders in a bid to reach the finish alone. The others were quickly caught by the Sky-led peloton but Flens was allowed to dangle out front with no more than a dozen seconds’ lead, in sight of the peloton as the race approached Utrecht for the first time.

Inevitably Flens was caught with a little over 20km to the finish, and with the pace set on the front of the peloton by Sky – with Liquigas-Doimo and Astana joining them – too high for anyone to escape a sprint looked inevitable. On a wide straight road with just over 6km to go though, a crash in the peloton brought down a number of riders including Italian champion Pippo Pozatto (Katusha). The incident also caused a split in the peloton with a group of around sixty riders in front, with Wiggins and a number of other overall contenders caught behind.

Liquigas-Doimo and HTC-Columbia kept the pace high in the closing stages preventing the second group from rejoining. Chris Sutton (Sky) was the first to go for the sprint but he was overtaken by Julian Dean (Garmin-Transitions) leading out Farrar, who took the win.  The second group came in 37 seconds later with most of the overall favourites.

As maglia rosa Wiggins was one of those caught behind the split he loses his overall race lead. A 3 second split in the front group put Farrar tantalisingly close to the pink jersey but it went to World champion Cadel Evans (BMC Racing) who leads the American by a slender second.

1. Tyler Farrar (USA) Garmin-Transitions
2. Matthew Goss (Aus) HTC-Columbia
3. Fabio Sabatini (Ita) Liquigas-Doimo
4. André Greipel (Ger) HTC-Columbia
5. Alessandro Petacchi (Ita) Lampre-Farnese-Vini
6. Chris Sutton (Aus) Team Sky
7. Robbie McEwen (Aus) Team Katusha
8. Graeme Brown (Aus) Rabobank
9. Julian Dean (NZl) Garmin-Transitions
10. Sacha Modolo (Ita) Colnago-CSF Inox

Standings after stage 2
1. Cadel Evans (Aus) BMC Racing Team
2. Tyler Farrar (USA) Garmin-Transitions @ 1s
3. Alexandre Vinokourov (Kaz) Team Astana @ 3s
4. Richie Porte (Aus) Team Saxo Bank @ 3s
5. David Millar (GBr) Garmin-Transitions @ 4s

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