We did get some crosswind action out on the road today albeit fairly brief. Things regrouped with only 30 riders or so missing the cut.
Teams jostled for position and it was a fairly chaotic sprint once again although it was certainly more “traditional” than what we had on the opening day. QuickStep put on a masterclass in bringing their man to the front and Viviani duly delivered with the win after romping home by what seemed a country mile.
The Italian has continued his sparkling start to the season and seems to be at the top of his game at the moment.
Van Poppel managed to come home second, after rounding an impressive Ackermann in the closing metres.
Will we see similar QuickStep domination tomorrow? Let’s have a look at what is in store for the riders.
Pan flat, once again!
The stage is pretty much a sightseeing tour around the main attractions that Abu Dhabi has to offer. At only 133km in length it is also the shortest of the open road stages we have this week.
The finish is fairly straightforward aside from a few sweeping turns.
Once again having a good lead-out will help a lot but it is not the end of the world if a sprinter can follow the right wheels and get lucky.
Like today, there is a small chance of echelons when the riders make their way along the top part of the loop, along the exposed causeway. It is forecast for ~20km/h winds coming from the north so we’ll just have to wait and see what happens!
I’m not even going to bore you with going through the sprinters again today as it is much the same as over the past few stages and if I’m honest, I can’t be arsed. Gives me more time to write Omloop instead!
Anyway, I think it was clear today who the fastest rider here is and with the best lead-out he should make it back to back wins, Viviani to finish first again.
No bet, again.
Thanks as always for reading and apologies for this truncated preview but I’d much rather focus on a more exciting race than this! Tomorrow’s TT write-up should be longer although I think a one-word post of “Dennis” might suffice. Anyway,
Those were My Two Spokes Worth.