News: Swift 3rd Stage 2 Volta Valenciana

Back in Team Sky, Ben Swift is third on stage 2 of Volta Valenciana won by European champion Matteo Trentin

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News: Swift 3rd Stage 2 Volta Valenciana

Back in Team Sky, Ben Swift is third on stage 2 of Volta Valenciana won by European champion Matteo Trentin 

Ben Swift sprinted to third place on day two in Valencia after a strong leadout from Team Sky. The Brit was back in the podium places on his full racing return with Team Sky, taking advantage of good positioning on a technical finish in Alicante.

Geraint Thomas had led the team to the front of the race with 10km to go, and from there our riders pushed the pace on the run-in with Ian Stannard, Salvatore Puccio and Diego Rosa. Chris Lawless joined Swift at the head of the race under the flamme rouge and finished 10th on the day, with Matteo Trentin (Mitchelton-Scott) picking up the victory. The race had been lined out over the top of the final La Carrasqueta climb, with the peloton pushing hard to distance Team Jumbo-Visma’s Dylan Groenewegen after the Dutchman lost contact on the climb.
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Ben Swift: “The guys were incredible. It’s what I’ve really missed – that real team unity. When we decided to go we took it on. We waited ever so slightly too long just as we started the final push on the leadout. They came three or four kph faster than us so it was just about trying to catch up. And with that roundabout being a little bit precarious where you entered that was where you came out really.

“It was a really good job from the guys and the legs are feeling good. With Chris (Lawless) being a second year pro it’s really good experience for him to do a leadout. He’s going to be the sprinter for this team in the next couple of years. So for him to learn what he needs and what he wants of a leadout rider is good.

“It’s nice to get a good result. It shows I’ve been training pretty well and I handled the climbs really well. But in hindsight I wish I’d gone a little bit earlier, if I’d have started my sprint with the idea of finishing at the roundabout.”
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Matteo Trentin (Mitchelton-Scott): “It feels really good, especially because I was working really hard during the whole winter and actually seeing the whole team so committed on this first road stage, the first race for us in Europe, it gave me that extra motivation for sure.”

“I was feeling good, my numbers in training have been alright but numbers and racing are two different things. Today I was never struggling, I was surfing in the wheels and in the final I think I pulled up a really good sprint coming at the right moment, in the right position, so I am really happy.

“We knew that the second position was the maximum position to come out of the roundabout to win the stage. When you leave the roundabout so close to the finish, for sure if you are in fourth position then the guys in front start sprinting and you are still cornering. I preferred to just give it a go as the first guy and I came really fast, so it was a good move.”

What’s Next?
A hilly third stage should start to see more time gaps appear on the general classification. Six categorised climbs pepper a day of constant undulations. The third category Salto de la Mora provides the finale, before a final steep drag to the finish.

Stage two result
1. Matteo Trentin (Mitchelton-Scott) 4:10:12
2. Nacer Bouhanni (Cofidis) s.t.
3. Ben Swift (Team Sky)
4. Sonny Colbrelli (Bahrain Merida)
5. Alexander Kristoff (UAE-Team Emirates)
10. Chris Lawless (Team Sky)

67. Geraint Thomas
98. Adam Yates
113. Ian Stannard
158. Harry Tanfield

Overall standings
1. Edvald Boasson Hagen (Dimension Data) 4:23:07
2. Ion Izagirre (Astana) +5″
3. Tony Martin (Team Jumbo-Visma) +7″
4. Dylan Teuns (Bahrain-Merida) +8″
5. Nelson Oliveira (Movistar) +11″
10. Diego Rosa (Team Sky) +20″
11. Geraint Thomas (Team Sky) s.t


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