Jumbo-Visma put on exhibition to claim outstanding 1-2-3 on opening stage of Paris-Nice

Frenchman Christophe Laporte crosses the line first, his first win for his new team

Jumbo-Visma
(Image credit: Getty)

Jumbo-Visma delivered a superb team performance to dominate the opening stage of Paris-Nice and put Primož Roglič in a terrific position of superiority over his rivals.

After a day that threatened echelons and two separate breakaways never being allowed to build a decent-sized advantage, Jumbo-Visma used a short third category climb six kilometres from the finish to unleash panic in the peloton and empower themselves into a commanding position that set them up for the win and denied the sprinters the chance they had been hoping would arise.

The trio of Roglič, Wout van Aert and Christophe Laporte flew up the final ascent with the peloton behind them unable to respond, before the three riders descended in unison and then crossed the line as one, Laporte being afforded the honours of taking the stage win with Roglič coming home in second. The peloton were 22 seconds in arrears.

It was a display of strength and excellent tactics that underlines the sheer depth of quality the Dutch team possesses and will have rival teams worrying, with GC favourites already facing an uphill battle to win the first major European stage race of the year as Roglič holds a 28 second advantage to his expected rivals after just day one.

Laporte will go into day two wearing the yellow jersey as the leader, a fine result for the Frenchman who joined the team this winter after eight seasons with Cofidis where he collected 21 wins. None, however, were as impressive as this one.

>>> Five things to look out for at Paris-Nice 2022

How it happened

An undulating day awaited the peloton at the start of the 80th edition of the Race to the Sun, the opening stage starting and finishing in a cold Mantes-la-Ville.

Matt Holmes of Lotto-Soudal and Aimé de Gendt of Intermarché-Wanty-Gobert-Matériaux attacked early and the duo were afforded a small gap of around two minutes, until the threat of echelons promoted an increase of speed in the peloton, thus resulting in the duo being absorbed by the pack with 73km still to race.

Ineos Grenadiers, who are led at the race by Adam Yates with Dani Martínez also looking to do well in the GC, were pulling the peloton in the hope of shredding riders from the peloton. Quick-Step Alpha Vinyl, hoping that it was a sprint stage for Fabio Jakobsen, were also at the head of proceedings.

A new breakaway had formed, though, with Frederik Frison (Lotto-Soudal), Yevgeniy Fedorov (Astana Qazaqstan) and Alexis Gougeard (B&B Hotels - KTM) sitting out front with a gap of around a minute.

The trio, however, were caught ahead of the final climb of Côte de Breuil-Bois-Robert, a 1.2km ascent that averaged 6.9%. It was here where Jumbo-Visma blew the race to pieces, immediately dropping sprinters like Jakobsen, Sonny Colbrelli (Bahrain-Victorious) and Dylan Groenewegen (BikExchange-Jayco).

It was Laporte who was pulling hard as they made their way up the incline, Van Aert and Roglič keeping on the wheel of their new teammate, with only Quick-Step Alpha Vinyl's Zdenek Stybar managing to follow.

The peloton was in tatters, winner of the last two editions Maximilian Schachmann (Bora-Hansgrohe) struggling to hold on along with the rest. It was long before the peloton accepted that the attack of the Jumbo-Visma trio was too strong to be able to bring back.

They soloed to the line as one, even being able to enjoy the final 200m together as they outstretched their arms in disbelief at what they had just produced. 

Laporte was allowed to cross the line first, with Roglič taking six bonus seconds for placing second and Van Aert rolling home in third. The peloton, led by Mads Pedersen of Trek-Segafredo, were 22 seconds adrift.

It was a display of utter class by Jumbo-Visma.

Results

1. Christophe Laporte (Fra) Jumbo-Visma, in 3-48.28
2. Primož Roglič (Slo) Jumbo-Visma
3. Wout van Aert (Bel) Jumbo-Visma, both at same time
4. Pierre Latour (Fra) TotalEnergies, at 19s
5. Mads Pedersen (Den) Trek-Segafredo, at 22s
6. Biniam Girmay Hailu (Eri) Intermaché-Wanty-Gobert-Matériaux
7. Ivan Garcia Cortina (Esp) Movistar
8. Fred Wright (GBr) Bahrain-Victorious
9. Jasper Philipsen (Bel) Alpecin-Fenix
10. Florian Senechal (Fra) Quick-Step Alpha Vinyl, all at same time

General classification after stage one

1. Christophe Laporte (Fra) Jumbo-Visma, in 3-48.28
2. Primož Roglič (Slo) Jumbo-Visma, at 4 secs
3. Wout van Aert (Bel) Jumbo-Visma, at 6 secs
4. Pierre Latour (Fra) TotalEnergies, at 29 secs
5. Mads Pedersen (Den) Trek-Segafredo, at 32 secs
6. Biniam Girmay Hailu (Eri) Intermaché-Wanty-Gobert-Matériaux
7. Ivan Garcia Cortina (Esp) Movistar
8. Fred Wright (GBr) Bahrain-Victorious
9. Jasper Philipsen (Bel) Alpecin-Fenix
10. Florian Senechal (Fra) Quick-Step Alpha Vinyl, all at same time

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