News: Knox 2nd on GC at Coppi e Bartali

James Knox sits in second place overall after his Deceuninck – Quick-Step team win the opening TTT in Coppi e Bartali TTT; Ethan Hayter second on stage 1

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News: Knox 2nd on GC at Coppi e Bartali

Deceuninck – Quick-Step Press Release

Deceuninck – Quick-Step racked up its 30th victory of the season in style, thanks to a superb collective effort, on stage 1b of the Settimana Internazionale Coppi e Bartali. After a quiet opening stage in the morning, the race scheduled a team time trial in the afternoon, and our squad – comprising João Almeida, Andrea Bagioli, Mikkel Honoré, James Knox, Pieter Serry and Mauri Vansevenant – recorded a quality display on the 13.3km-long course.

©Justin Setterfield / Getty Images

Despite being among the early starters and having a very young line-up, the Wolfpack put in a flying ride and averaged a stunning 54.95km/h, covering the route in 14:32, the fastest provisional result at the finish by quite a margin. When all was said and done at the end of the day, eight seconds separated Deceuninck – Quick-Step from Ineos Grenadiers, who concluded the stage as runner-up, with Bora-hansgrohe being a further three seconds adrift.

First rider over the line was Mikkel Honoré. The 23-year-old, who is only into his second pro season, took to the podium three times: to celebrate the stage success with his teammates and then to receive the white and orange jerseys, which reward the general classification leader and the best young rider of the race. It was a special moment for Mikkel, who tops the overall standings at a race for the first time in his career – a result that he was quick to underline wouldn’t have been possible without the help of the team.

“We wanted so much to win this stage, but when we heard that all the other squads had finished and we still had the best time, it surprised us a bit. We gave 110% and displayed an incredible team spirit and a huge amount of ambition. Everything went perfect today, our Specialized bikes were superb and I can tell you that I’ve never done such a good TTT as a whole team. This performance was truly amazing, even more impressive considering we are a team of light guys, and this only proved that when you work as a real squad, you can achieve anything.”

“It means a lot to lead a stage race for the first time in my career and I owe it to the Wolfpack. I got to wear a distinctive jersey also last year, in China, but it wasn’t mine, as the GC leader was topping also the youth classification, so the latter jersey landed on my shoulders. We’ll continue to do our best over the next few days and go for more nice results here in Italy”, a delighted Mikkel explained.

Ethan Hayter (Ineos) explained: “I was pretty happy with the result, but obviously it’s a bit frustrating to be so close to the win. The team were really good. We were originally working for Jhonatan (Narvaez), but his group got pulled back with 20km to go and he was really honest and said he would be too tired for the sprint after the attack. So on the final circuit he worked with Brandon Rivera to keep me out of trouble and ensured the bunch stayed together which was perfect.”

He added: “I’ve had a bit of a rough time in the last couple months with injuries and crashes and never really got to test myself in the races so far either, so it was really nice and I can take some confidence and hopefully build on this going forward. I’m excited for Coppi Bartali and hopefully building some good momentum and experience. I’ve not had the chance to learn much yet, but I did knock my Oakleys off my helmet with a musette today – so I will definitely be avoiding that move in the future!”

“I’m not sure of my exact race programme with everything being so crazy at the moment, but I’m hoping to make the team and gain experience in the Classics.”

Stage 1
1. Olav Kooij Team Jumbo – Visma 02:08:26
2. Ethan Hayter INEOS Grenadiers
3. Phil Bauhaus Bahrain-McLaren
4. Gianni Vermeersch Alpecin-Fenix
5. Davide Persico Team Colpack – Ballan
6. Andrea Pasqualon Circus-Wanty Gobert
7. Francesco Di Felice Sangemini Trevigiani Mg.Kvis VPM
8. Jempy Drucker Bora-Hansgrohe
9. Biniam Girmay Nippo Delko Provence
10. Alex Molenaar Burgos-BH

23. Ben Swift INEOS Grenadiers
24. Scott Thwaites Alpecin-Fenix
43. James Knox Deceuninck-Quick Step
109. Charlie Quarterman Trek-Segafredo
115. Owain Doull INEOS Grenadiers
126. Simon Carr Nippo Delko Provence
130. Fred Wright Bahrain-McLaren
138. Scott Davies Bahrain-McLaren

Stage 2
1 Deceuninck-Quick Step 14:32
2 INEOS Grenadiers @ 08
3 Bora-Hansgrohe @ 11
4 NTT Pro Cycling Team @ 14
5 Team Jumbo – Visma @ 17
6 Movistar Team @ 18
7 Astana Pro Team @ 18
8 Bahrain-McLaren @ 19
9 UAE Team Emirates @ 19
10 Trek-Segafredo @ 22

1. Mikkel Honore Deceuninck-Quick Step 02:22:58
2. James Knox Deceuninck-Quick Step
3. Joao Almeida Deceuninck-Quick Step
4. Andrea Bagioli Deceuninck-Quick Step
5. Pieter Serry Deceuninck-Quick Step
6. Mauri Vansevenant Deceuninck-Quick Step @ 03
7. Ethan Hayter INEOS Grenadiers @ 04
8. Jhonnatan Narvaez INEOS Grenadiers @ 08
9 Brandon Rivera INEOS Grenadiers
10. Owain Doull INEOS Grenadiers
11. Ben Swift INEOS Grenadiers @ 10

Full Result Here  

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