Team Sky's Geraint Thomas wins second stage of Tirreno-Adriatico
By Andy Charles
Last Updated: 09/03/17 4:58pm
Geraint Thomas claimed victory for a shell-shocked Team Sky on the second stage of Tirreno-Adriatico.
Thomas found himself in a lowly 109th place after Wednesday's opening team time-trial, when Gianni Moscon suffered a nasty crash, but he bounced back in style on the 228km stage from Camaiore to Pomarance.
He made a number of attacks on the closing climb and broke away from the remnants of the leading group with less than 5km remaining, building a lead of almost 20 seconds.
Tom Dumoulin (Team Sunweb) tried to give chase and closed the deficit but he could only just hold on for second on the line, nine seconds adrift of the Welshman.
World champion Peter Sagan (Bora-Hansgrohe) appeared to drop back through the group early on the final climb but he moved back to the head of the chasers and won the sprint for third place.
Fourth place went to Olympic Games road race champion Greg van Avermaet, who takes the race lead from BMC Racing team-mate Damiano Caruso on countback.
Recent Strade Bianche winner Michal Kwiatkowski finished sixth for Team Sky, one place ahead of Great Britain's Adam Yates, with race favourite Nairo Quintana finishing ninth.
Stage 2 result:
1 Geraint Thomas (Gbr) Team Sky 5h 51m 44s
2 Tom Dumoulin (Ned) Team Sunweb +9s
3 Peter Sagan (Svk) Bora-Hansgrohe all same time
4 Greg van Avermaet (Bel) BMC Racing
5 Francesco Gavazzi (Ita) Androni Giocattoli
1 Greg van Avermaet (Bel) BMC Racing 6h 15m 14s
2 Rohan Dennis (Aus) BMC Racing all same time
3 Tejay van Garderen (USA) BMC Racing
4 Damiano Caruso (Ita) BMC Racing
5 Niki Terpstra (Ned) Quick-Step Floors +16s