UAE Tour – Stage 2 Time Trial

There was a day of drama and celebration on day 2 of the UAE Tour when Filippo Ganna won yet another time trial in the rainbow stripes whilst race leader Mathieu van der Poel had to leave the race after a positive for Covid in his team

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UAE Tour – Stage 2 Time Trial

There was a day of drama and celebration on day 2 of the UAE Tour when Filippo Ganna won yet another time trial in the rainbow stripes whilst race leader Mathieu van der Poel had to leave the race after being postive for Covid.

ITT World Champion Filippo Ganna (Ineos Grenadiers) won the stage ahead of Stefan Bissegger (EF Education – Nippo) and Mikkel Bjerg (UAE Team Emirates) over a 13km parcour on the Hudayriyat Island. Tadej Pogačar (UAE Team Emirates), 4th on the stage, is the new leader of the GC and has been awarded the Red Jersey.

The Italian Ganna was the only rider to dip under 14 minutes in the 13-kilometre test at an average speed of 55.9km/h, taking the stage victory by 14 seconds and racking up his eighth time trial win in a row. The winning run, dating back to the Italian time trial nationals last August, has seen Ganna go on to become the most dominant time trial specialist in the sport. Adam Yates also had a good day, finishing only 34th in the Time Trial but moving up to fifth overall.

Filippo Ganna: “Every race is hard and to arrive with focus and good legs is not easy. Luckily my body was ready today and I was able to take this fantastic result for me and the team. It’s strange in the middle of the desert but it’s really nice. It’s my first time at the Abu Dhabi Tour. I’m really happy and I hope to continue like this in future races, including at Tirreno next month. Every TT is a test for me. I try to arrive better and better. It was a really high-speed stage, almost 56km/h. It’s really hard but I’m happy to be sitting here today.”

Tadej Pogačar: the new race leader said: “I did not start with any particular result in my mind, I just wanted to go as fast and as good as I could and I think I managed to do that. I’m in a good position now with five stages to go, but anything can happen, and tomorrow we already have the hardest finish for this Tour at Jabel Hafeet. I hope to recover well and have good legs and we will see what happens. I’m really happy with my performance today. The wind was quite strong. I did my best and it was a really good time, I’m happy to have the leader’s jersey. I prefer to be ahead than behind on GC.”

João Almeida: An average speed a shy over 54km/h helped João slot into the top 10 at the finish, a result that propelled him to second overall, just a handful of seconds behind the new leader of the UAE Tour. “Today was very windy, but I gave everything out there and I am really happy with my effort. It’s my first race of the season and it’s a nice feeling to know I’m on the podium after two hard stages. We are in a good position for the first summit finish and we’ll continue like this, taking it day by day and seeing where that leads us”, said Almeida, the new holder of the points jersey, after his sixth place on Monday’s stage.

Luis Leon Sanchez: “I was aiming to show a good result in today’s individual time trial and I am really happy with my performance. I knew it would be quite impossible to fight for a win against such a big specialist as Filippo Ganna, so my main goal was to do it as fast as possible and I think, I succeed. I did a good warm up in the morning, so I was pretty ready at the start and I just gave my best over the distance. Despite not the best start of the race yesterday, I have good feelings and I hope together with the team we can achieve some important results here”, – said Luis Leon Sanchez.

Van der Poel Leaves Race
After wining stage 1, Mathieu van der Poel, had to leave the race when a member of his team’s staff was positive for the virus. Alpecin-Fenix, in agreement with the UAE Tour organiser, decided to withdraw its team from the race, in order to safeguard the race bubble and ensure the safe continuation of the race. The team was notified of the positive result of a member of its staff from the round of tests conducted on Sunday evening, 21st of February.

Upon receiving the results, the person immediately went into isolation, and all those who came into contact with this person are self-isolating, in compliance with the protocol measures put in place by the race organisers and UAE Health Authorities. All team members will undertake further tests in the coming days, while they remain in isolation.

1. Filippo Ganna INEOS Grenadiers 13:56
2. Stefan Bissegger EF Education-NIPPO @ 14
3. Mikkel Bjerg UAE Team Emirates @ 21
4. Tadej Pogacar UAE Team Emirates @ 24
5. Luis León Sánchez Astana-Premier Tech @ 30
6. Joao Almeida Deceuninck-Quick Step @ 30
7. Max Walscheid Qhubeka ASSOS @ 32
8. Stefan de Bod Astana-Premier Tech @ 33
9. Daniel Martinez INEOS Grenadiers @ 36
10. Matthias Brändle Israel Start-Up Nation @ 38

20. Fred Wright @ 49
27. Alex Dowsett @ 53
34. Adam Yates @ 58
82. Harry Tanfield @ 1.35
83. Chris Froome @ 1.36
102. Mark Donovan @1.50
123. Luke Rowe @2.12

Full Result Here: 


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