Ayuso survives a crazy day that Vernon conquers by sprinting

thibau nys he was close to starting to write his own story today, continuing the legacy of his father, Sven Nys, a legend of world cyclocross. But the young Belgian (20 years old) was on the brink of opening his record of victories on the road by finishing second in the first online stage of the romandie tour, where an excellent EthanVernon He beat him in the group sprint that played for victory in Vallée de Joux. The Briton gave Soudal Quick-Step victory for the second day in a row, after the success of his teammate Josef Cerny in the prologue, to lead the general by 1 second of rent compared to Tobias Foss. Juan Ayuso saved a day full of dropouts to remain as the best of favorites.

The day started with unexpected and unfortunate news: Alexey Lutsenko did not start after testing positive for covid-19. A harbinger of the rain of casualties that was to come… And not just any names. Some said goodbye to the fight for the stage, in the case of Mark Cavendish and Rui Costa, others, to the general as a result of stomach problems, Simon Yates situation. The five brave men who made up the breakaway almost at the start did resist, Tobias Bayer (Alpecin), Julien Bernard (Trek), Michael Schär (AG2R), Dario Lillo (Q36.5) and Jan Stöckli (Corratec), until there were 74 km left. for goal. By then, the race was already broken…

And it is that once the successive pass to the levels of Fontanezier and Mauborget has been overcome, the platoon broke up into two large groups. There the seams were seen on Ineos runners, such as Egan Bernal and Ethan Hayter, who clung to the leading group with suffering. Not so a good team of sprinters, like Gaviria, Nizzolo, Dainese and Viviani, whose chances of victory vanished far from the finish line. At Col Mont d’Orzeires, the last mountainous difficulty of the day, the gap shot up to more than four minutes, so, with the breakaway neutralized, the only possible outcome would be a reduced sprint.

Earlier, with 15 km to go, the Jumbo-Visma played its cards in the intermediate sprint to secure the lead. Gesink made a great approximation and Foss sprinted with everything to go through the Le Pont arch first, without opposition, and guarantee the surprise in general thanks to the bonus. Only virtually… The Norwegian managed to gain a few meters of distance, but decided not to continue the movement and was absorbed. In the final sprint there was no color. The Quick-Step imposed its effectiveness in these fights to leave success on a platter for Vernon, including the double award for the leadership. This Thursday, plus mid-mountain, with five ports, 2nd and 3rd category, that can lead to distant attacks or that a small group plays the victory.

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