Tour of Austria: Elia Viviani wins stage, Sep Vanmarcke leads GC
Jul 03 2017 04:14 pm CET

Tour of Austria: Elia Viviani wins stage, Sep Vanmarcke leads GC

Team Sky's Elia Viviani has taken the victory at the first stage of the Tour of Austria. The rider was the first to cross the finish line after a bunch sprint.

After the prologue in Graz, the first regular stage of the Austrian race took the riders over a 193.8 kilometre course finishing in Vienna. The route was mostly flat, with a second category climb in Mönichkirchen in the middle, and seemed perfectly suitable for a mass sprint at the finish.

During the ascent an escape group was formed. Dominic Hrinkow (Hrinkow Advarics Cycleangteam), Peter Kusztor (Amplatz-BMC), Stefan Rabitsch (Felbermayr Simplon Wels), Patrick Gamper (Tirol Cycling Team), Gatis Smukulis (Delko Marseille Provence KTM) and Hans-Jörg Leopold (WSA-Greenlife) managed to create a gap of more than three minutes over the peloton. This group disintegrated slowly and only Gamper, Rabitsch and Smukulis could remain in the lead.

The peloton slowly closed the gap and caught the final remaining escapee, Smukulis, at 3 kilometres from the finish line. At the sprint, Viviani showed once again the strength of his legs and crossed the line before Sep Vanmarcke (Cannondale-Drapac) and Jason Lowndes (Israel Cycling Academy).

His second place on the day was enough for Vanmarcke to move to the top of the overall classification.
Photo of Elia Viviani (cropped) by Team Sky



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