Rick Zabel sprints to glory
May 3 rd 2019 - 19:12
The bunched sprint expected for stage 2 eventually occurred in the streets of Bedale. After catching a 6-man breakaway group, the pack made it bunched to the finish where Rick Zabel proved to be the fastest. The German, son of legendary sprinter Erik Zabel claimed the win ahead of Van Poppel and Lawless. Jesper Asselman keeps his overall leader’s blue jersey.
Several hours after Lorena Wiebes conquered stage 1 of the women’s ASDA Tour de Yorkshire, it was the men’s turn to take on their second stage of the event. And the sky was just as grey over Barnsley for the 126 riders still in the race. A good way to warm up was to attack and that’s exactly what Fabien Grellier (TDE) di as soon as the first kilometre. The Frenchman was eventually caught by three other riders at km 7: Stewart (DHB), Scott (SCB) and (McGlinchey (VIT). The gap grew rapidly and reached 1’25’’ at km 9 but the pack started chasing under the influence of team Dimension Data.
Just before the first intermediate sprint (km 20,5), won by Stewart, two Wiggins-Le Col riders manage to take off on a counter-attack. Fouché and Scott (WGN) eventually catch up with the front four while the gap again increases over the pack: 2’50’’ at km 31.
Approaching the climb of the day, James Fouché decided to powerr away on a quest for mountain points. He reached the top of the Côte de Lidley (km 69) on his own with an advantage of 15’’ over Stewart and McGlinchey and 1’55’’ over the pack. On the descent, the leading rider was joined again by his former companions.
The gap carried on dropping as the peloton entered the circuit of the next World Championships around Harrogate. At the second bonus sprint (84,5), claimed by Jacob Scott, the pack had closed in at 55’’. With 16kms to go, Stewart and McGlinchey feeling the pack moving closer broke away. While their former companions were caught they continued their efforts helped out by Rolland (VCB), Ourselin (TDE) and Williams (SCB). But the front five were finally realled in by the pack in the final four kilometres.
The pack remained bunched all the way to the final straight in Bedale. Well helped out by his Katusha-Alpecin team mates, Rick Zabel powered to the line claiming victory ahead of Boy Van Poppel (ROC) and Christopher Lawless (INS). Son of six-time Tour de France green jersey Erik Zabel, the German claims his first win of the season. The overall leader’s blue jersey remains on the shoulders of Jesper Asselman (ROC) while Van Poppel takes command of the points classification and Jacob Hennessy remains best climber.