Michael Albasini claimed back-to-back wins in this year’s Tour of Romandie, after winning stage 2 in a bunch sprint ahead of Tony Hurel (Team Europcar) and Giacomo Nizzolo today.
Todays’ 166.5 kilometer stage from Sion to Montreaux, got underway with an early breakaway duo comprised of Martin Kohler (BMC Racing) and Pirim Lang (IAM Cycling).
As the race entered the final 30 kilometers, the duo had built up a moderate lead of 2 minutes over the peloton. However, eager to protect their leader Michal Kwiatkowski, Omega Pharma-QuickStep was ever present at the head of the peloton – driving the chase.
With 15 kilometers remaining, the concerted effort of Tinkoff-Saxo, Orica-GreenEdge, Lampre-Merida and Omega Pharma-QuickStep, succeeded in reducing the escapee’s advantage to 1:30. And, from there, they continued to reel them in, until the final 3 kilometers when they were caught.
The remaining 400 meters presented a tricky approach to the finish, with a final "kick" in elevation just before the line – that made for a challenging situation for teams to set-up their sprinters.
As the race was winding up for a sprint finale, Kwiatkowski appeared to be in excellent position as he began his lead-out. However, it was Albasini who once again emerged victorious at the line.
Meanwhile, Ramunas Navardauskas finished in third – to round out today’s podium.
General Classification after Stage 2 SUI 1 ALBASINI, Michael (ORICA GreenEDGE) 6:29:50 POL 2 KWIATKOWSKI, Michal (OMEGA PHARMA – QUICK-STEP) + 5 LTU 3 NAVARDAUSKAS, Ramunas (GARMIN SHARP) + 10 ESP 4 HERRADA LOPEZ, Jesus (MOVISTAR) + 11 AUT 5 BRANDLE, Matthias (IAM CYCLING) + 12 AUS 6 DENNIS, Rohan (GARMIN SHARP) + 13 GER 7 MARTIN, Tony (OMEGA PHARMA – QUICK-STEP) + 14 GBR 8 FROOME, Christopher (SKY) + 19
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