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Tour of Oman 2016 Stage 1

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photo credits @ Tour of Oman 

Bob Jungels (Etixx-QuickStep) claimed the opening stage of the Tour of Oman today, after the Luxembourg rider attacked during the closing 2 kilometers along the day’s final climb to commence a solo victory.  

“We did the recon yesterday and I told the mechanics to put a 55-tooth on the front for the descent. I planned this attack for two days, even longer, so I’m happy with it,” Jungels said after pulling on the leader’s red jersey.

“My objective was to win a stage and I’ve done that now. Tomorrow it might be hard to defend my lead but we have Dan Martin who could be really good on Green Mountain. We’ll keep taking it day by day.”

Race Highlights

After just 2 kilometers of racing, the duo of Christoph Pfingsten (Bora-Argon 18) and Kenny Dehaes (Wanty Groupe Gobert) came to form the day’s first breakaway group, only to be quickly joined by Berden De Vries (Roompot Oranje Peloton), Pieter Vanspeybrouck (Topsport-Vlaanderen Baloise), Peter Koning (Drapac).

From there, the quintet rapidly opened up a sizable advantage of six minutes over peloton – after 15 kilometers of racing. 

However, as the escapees reached the 50 kilometer mark, their gap began to fall steadily, thanks to the efforts of Astana and BMC who were setting the pace back at head of the peloton.

De Vries took the maximum points during the first intermediate sprint at the 76 kilometer mark, followed by Dehaes and Vanspeybrouck. In the meantime however, their advantage over the peloton had been reduced to three minutes. 

As the escapees were making their through the city of Muscat, they faced strong headwinds, which caused their lead to fall even further, to where they were holding onto just a minute gap.

Shortly thereafter, Koning and Dehaes were the first two riders to be reclaimed by the peloton during the last 30 kilometers, while the remaining three were reeled in as the race reached the lower slopes of Al Hamriyah.

Next came an attack from Pavel Kochetkov (Katusha), who managed to open a slight gap for himself, followed by Sébastien Turgot (AG2R-La Mondiale).

However, the French rider was quickly caught during the run-up to the Al Jissah climb, while Amaury Capiot (Topsport Vlaanderen-Baloise) took the points for the second intermediate sprint of the day. 

As the climb ramped up to double-digit gradients during the final five kilometers, the peloton started to fracture, with Richie Porte (BMC) and Alexander Kristoff (Katusha) among the riders who got dropped.

As the race made its way up the final climb, a sizable group of 18 riders containing Jakob Fuglsang (Astana), Jungels, Serge Pauwels, Romain Bardet, Edvald Boasson Hagen (Dimension Data), Tom Dumoulin (Giant-Alpecin), Greg Van Avermaet (BMC), Eduardo Sepulveda( Fortuneo Vital Concept), Rui Costa (Lampre-Merida), Davide Rebellin (CCC Sprandi Polkowice), Floris de Tier (Topsport), Vincenzo Nibali (Astana), Dan Martin (Etixx-QuickStep), Domenico Pozzovivo (AG2R-La Mondiale), Patrick Konrad (Bora-Argon 18), Jacques Janse Van Resnburg (Dimension Data), and Jurgen van den Broeck (Katusha), had managed to open up a slight gap over the rest of the peloton. 

However, as the group continued to fragment along the final climb, Jungels later saw an opportunity to attack during the descent, subsequently opening up a slight gap of six seconds – that told for the remaining two kilometers.   

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Top 10 Finishers

1 Bob Jungels (Lux) Etixx-QuickStep 3:37:33
2 Serge Pauwels (Bel) Dimension Data 0:00:06
3 Romain Bardet (Fra) AG2R-La Mondiale 0:00:08
4 Edvald Boasson Hagen (Nor) Dimension Data
5 Tom Dumoulin (Ned) Team Giant-Alpecin
6 Greg Van Avermaet (Bel) BMC Racing Team
7 Rui Alberto Faria da Costa (Por) Lampre-Merida
8 Davide Rebellin (Ita) CCC Sprandi Polkowice
9 Floris De Tier (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen-Baloise
10 Vincenzo Nibali (Ita) Astana Pro Team

General Classification after stage 1

1 Bob Jungels (Lux) Etixx-QuickStep 3:37:23
2 Serge Pauwels (Bel) Dimension Data 0:00:10
3 Romain Bardet (Fra) AG2R-La Mondiale 0:00:14
4 Edvald Boasson Hagen (Nor) Dimension Data 0:00:18
5 Tom Dumoulin (Ned) Team Giant-Alpecin
6 Greg Van Avermaet (Bel) BMC Racing Team
7 Rui Alberto Faria da Costa (Por) Lampre-Merida
8 Davide Rebellin (Ita) CCC Sprandi Polkowice
9 Floris De Tier (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen-Baloise
10 Vincenzo Nibali (Ita) Astana Pro Team

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