Opening stage of the 2015 Tour of Britain concludes with a close sprint between Elia Viviani, Mark Cavendish and André Greipel
- Viviani takes early race lead

Italian Elia Viviani (Sky) narrowly beat Mark Cavendish (Etixx-QuickStep) to claim stage one of the Tour of Britain in Wrexham on Sunday.

After his Sky team had ridden on the front of the peloton for almost the entire duration of the stage, Viviani repaid their efforts with a victory after a twisting run-in to the finish line.

Going into the final 50 metres, it looked like a straight-up fight between sprint powerhouses André Greipel (Lotto-Soudal) and Cavendish. As the two riders marked each other, Viviani zipped up the left-hand side of the road to pinch the victory by a tyre’s width. Greipel had to settle for third, with British rider Owain Doull (Team Wiggins) in fourth.

It’s Viviani’s second stage win in the Tour of Britain, after he won the opening stage of the race in 2013 while riding for Cannondale.

>>> Wiggins, Cavendish, Dowsett join stars for Tour of Britain team presentation

The day’s break consisted of Conor Dunne (An Post-Chain Reaction), Tom Stewart (Madison-Genesis), Tour of Britain veteran Kristian House (JLT Condor) and Pete Williams (One Pro Cycling). The quartet navigated the testing, undulating route through the Welsh scenery working well together – and were only caught in the dying kilometres to set up a bunch finish.

Dunne took the points classification lead, House the King of the Mountains and Williams the combativity award for their day-long efforts.

Viviani will wear the yellow jersey of race leader going into the race’s second stage from Clitheroe to Colne, another hilly day that features an almost relentless selection of climbs, including the first category climbs of Nick O’Pendle and Bleara Moor, and the second category Pendle Big End. An uphill kick to the line with provide a testing finale.

The 2015 Tour of Britain concludes on Sunday, September 13 in London.

 

Results

Tour of Britain 2015, stage one: Beaumaris, Anglesey to Wrexham, 177km
1. Elia Viviani (Ita) Team Sky in 4-26-29
2. Mark Cavendish (GBr) Etixx-QuickStep
3. André Greipel (Ger) Lotto-Soudal
4. Owain Doull (GBr) Team Wiggins
5. Juan Jose Lobato (Spa) Movistar
6. Pim Ligthart (Ned) Lotto-Soudal
7. Mark Renshaw (Aus) Etixx-QuickStep
8. Tyler Farrar (USA) MTN-Qhubeka
9. Alberto Bettiol (Ita) Cannondale-Garmin
10. Graham Briggs (GBr) JLT Condor all same time

Overall classification after stage one
1. Elia Viviani (Ita) Team Sky in 4-26-19
2. Mark Cavendish (GBr) Etixx-QuickStep at 4 secs
3. André Greipel (Ger) Lotto-Soudal at 6 secs
4. Owain Doull (GBr) Team Wiggins at 10 secs
5. Juan Jose Lobato (Spa) Movistar
6. Pim Ligthart (Ned) Lotto-Soudal
7. Mark Renshaw (Aus) Etixx-QuickStep
8. Tyler Farrar (USA) MTN-Qhubeka
9. Alberto Bettiol (Ita) Cannondale-Garmin
10. Graham Briggs (GBr) JLT Condor all same time

  • RobTM

    Motos seemed well ridden to, narrow roads but slow passes and more room given to the bike racers