- - Volta a Catalunya 2023 Stage 2

Volta a Catalunya 2023 Stage 2

photo credits @ VaC 

Giulio Ciccone (Trek-Segafredo) claimed stage 2 of the Volta a Catalunya today, after the Italian rider beat Primoz Roglič (Jumbo-Visma) and Remco Evenepoel (Soudal-QuickStep) in a summit finish atop the grueling 15 kilometer climb of Vallter 2000, following a series of late accelerations from Eevenpoel that managed to reel in Esteban Chaves (EF Education-EasyPost) just 500 meters from the line.  

Race Highlights

Attacks flew from the drop of the flag in today’s 165.5 kilometer route from the town of Mataró, north of Barcelona, to Vallter 2000, with an eight-rider breakaway group quickly distancing the peloton.

After the escapees swallowed up the KOM points over the Coll de Coubet, they then descended into the valley and onto the climb to Vallter 2000, while holding a two minute advantage over the peloton. 

Sensing the peloton was closing in, Simon Carr (EF Education-EasyPost) decided to set-off on his own with 12 kilometers to go. But, the British rider was eventually reined in just 5 kilometers later, with Bahrain Victorious leading the pack.

As his EF Education-EasyPost teammate rejoined the peloton, Chaves darted ahead of the thinning front group, while Sepp Kuss (Jumbo-Visma) tried to mark his move. But, as the gradient kicked, the American rider couldn’t match the pace of his Colombian rival.

From there, Chaves’s advantage quickly stretched out, earning him a 30-second gap with just over 2 kilometers remaining.  

However, moves from Mikel Landa (Bahrain Victorious) and Evenepoel soon cut into Chaves’ lead, who was clinging to only a handful of seconds under the flamme rouge.

The catch came with 500 meters to go, when a grimacing Chaves was overtaken as the finish line came into sight. 

Trying to distance his rivals, Evenepoel kicked out of the saddle, but Ciccone and Roglič remained on his wheel. The trio rounded the final bend together, where the world champion took a wider line, and was passed on his inside by the other two. 

Ciccone won the bike throw, earning himself ten bonus seconds, third place in the standings and, most importantly, a celebratory trip to the podium. 

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