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Astana’s sprinters play first stage in fast final during Santos Tour Down Under Stage 1

21 January 2020 17:54

NUR-SULTAN. KAZINFORM - The 2020 Santos Tour Down Under has been opened by the first stage of the race around Tanunda with a total distance of 150 km. With a few KOMs in the menu the first mountain points have been played today, but, in general, it was a perfect day for the sprinters and the stage ended with a much-expected bunch sprint, Kazinform has learnt from the club’s press service.

The stage went quite well for us. The guys worked really good together, supporting each other during the whole day. In the peloton all teams worked hard to bring the group all together to the finish for the sprint. So, it was a bunch sprint in the final. Not much to say about this first stage, but now we are looking forward to the stage tomorrow, which looks much more interesting for us, said Stefano Zanini.

The Irish national champion Sam Bennett won the first stage in a fast sprint ahead of Jasper Philipsen and Erik Baška. All Astana Pro Team riders finished the stage inside the main peloton, while Luis Leon Sanchez became the best team’s performer with 23rd position.

After the first intermediate sprint was played by the peloton, an attack of four riders created the breakaway of the day. These riders took both mountain finishes as well as the second intermediate sprint, but the peloton caught them back far from the finish line. Astana’s Laurens De Vreese took one point at the second KOM, placing himself on the third position in the King of Mountain classification.

Stage 2 of the Santos Tour Down Under will be held tomorrow: it will be a 135.8-km-long distance from Woodside to Stirling with a hilly profile and an uphill finish.