Ethan Hayter sprints to victory and the overall lead on stage two of Volta ao Algarve 2021

The British rider had two team-mates sacrificing themselves to carry him to the win

Ethan Hayter
(Image credit: Photo by Luc Claessen/Stringer/Getty Images)

Ethan Hayter took stage two and the overall lead with a sprint to the line on Alto do Fóia at the end of stage two of the Volta ao Algarve 2021.

Hayter (Ineos Grenadiers) looked like he was by far the most comfortable of any of the riders and was helped by his two team-mates of Iván Sosa and Sebastián Henao with the British rider beating João Rodrigues (W52-FC Porto), Jonathan Lastra (Caja Rural) and Élie Gesbert (Arkéa-Samsic).

The day started in the town of Sagres before they raced over a few steady climbs on their way to the main tests of the day. Three categorised climbs back-to-back hit the riders in the final 35km with a summit finish atop the Alto do Foia after 182.8km of racing.

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Seven riders of Marvin Scheulen (L.A. Aluminos), Fabio Costa (Efapel), Samuel Jose Caldeira (W52-PC Porto), Damien Touze (Ag2r-Citroen), Kenny Molly (Bigoal-Pauwels Sauces), Clement Carisey (Delko) and Joseph Laverick (Hagens Bermans-Axeon) who did get over three minutes but Ineos Grenadiers controlled the pace in the peloton.

The first of the three climbs saw the break burst with riders dropping out the back. It was the same story in the peloton as the sprinters dropped out of the back as the pace upped again thanks to UAE Team Emirates with 27km to go.

Touze, Molly and Caldeira were the last three riders left upfront in the break as the rest of the riders started to struggle. The gap had gone back up to around three minutes before the second climb of the day.

Pre-race favourite and Portuguese champion Rui Costa crashed on the descent before the second climb of the Pomba at 19km to go as the pace was being hammered along by Deceuninck - Quick-Step and W52-FC Porto..

Molly was the last rider to be caught but was brought back with 17km to go as they hit the Pomba climb. W52-FC Porto with Radio Popular hit the front with five riders working for their leaders at the 10km to go mark. 

Ineos Grenadiers looked to be dominating with Sosa, Henao and Hayter all in the front group along with Gesbert, Lastra and Rodrigues.

Hayter took the win and goes into the yellow jersey of race leader having a one-second lead over Rodrigues and Lastra due to no bonus seconds.

Stage three is another day for the sprinters before a time trial on stage four and a hilly stage to finish off the race on stage five.

Volta ao Algarve 2021 stage two, Sagres to Alto do Fóia (182.8km)

1. Ethan Hayter (GBr) Ineos Grenadiers, in 4-48-43
2. João Rodrigues (Por) W52-FC Porto
3. Jonthan Lastra (Esp) Caja Rural-Seguros RGA, all at same time
4. Élie Gesbert (Fra) Team Arkéa-Samsic, at 4 seconds
5. Iván Sosa (Col) Ineos Grenadiers, at 9s
6. Sebastián Henao (Col) Ineos Grenadiers, at 20s
7. Amaro Antunes (Por) W52-FC Porto, at 30s
8. Odd Christian Eiking (Nor) Intermarché-Wanty-Gobert Matériaux, at 34s
9. Luís Fernandes (Por) Radio Popular-Boavista, at 35s
10 Nicolas Prodhomme (Fra) Ag2r-Citroën Team, at same time.

General classification after stage two

1. Ethan Hayter (GBr) Ineos Grenadiers, in 9-26-24
2. João Rodrigues (Por) W52-FC Porto
3. Jonthan Lastra (Esp) Caja Rural-Seguros RGA, all at same time
4. Élie Gesbert (Fra) Team Arkéa-Samsic, at 4 seconds
5. Iván Sosa (Col) Ineos Grenadiers, at 9s
6. Sebastián Henao (Col) Ineos Grenadiers, at 20s
7. Amaro Antunes (Por) W52-FC Porto, at 30s
8. Odd Christian Eiking (Nor) Intermarché-Wanty-Gobert Matériaux, at 34s
9. Luís Fernandes (Por) Radio Popular-Boavista, at 35s
10 Nicolas Prodhomme (Fra) Ag2r-Citroën Team, at same time.