Sam Bennett sprints to stage one victory at Volta ao Algarve 2021 after yet another perfect lead-out

The Irishman's team came up to the front at exactly the right position and nobody could challenge from there on in

(Image credit: Getty Images)

Sam Bennett took the opening stage of the Volta ao Algarve 2021 after his team nailed the timing of the lead-out yet again for their star fast-man beating, Danny Van Poppel and Jon Aberasturi.

Bennett (Deceuninck - Quick-Step) had Davide Ballerini and Michael Mørkøv in front of him as they brought him to the front with around 500 metres to go. Van Poppel (Intermarché) and Aberasturi (Caja Rural) completed the podium on the day.

The day started in Lagos and took on a relatively lumpy profile of 189.5km to Portimao. Five riders originally went away into the early break before César Nicolas Paredes (Louletano-Loulé) decided to drop back to the peloton.

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This left Carlos Canal (Burgos-BH), Jon Irisarri (Caja Rural), Gustavo César (Atum General-Tavira-Maria Nova Hotel) and Hugo Nunes (Radio Popular-Boavista). They managed a maximum gap of around three minutes before being dragged back.

They were caught with 19km to go as counter-attacks went away on a small rise straight after the catch but Tour of Flanders winner Kasper Asgreen (Deceuninck - Quick-Step) marked it out meaning it didn’t get far.

Various teams then hit the front to control the pace towards the line for their names for the sprint finish as well as for riders going for the overall win. Ineos Grenadiers, who are going for both, had complete control into the last 10km.

Euskaltel-Euskadi sent Peio Goikoetxea up the road on a solo attack with 9km to go but he was easily brought back a kilometre later.

The bunch split in the final 5km due to the tight roads and roundabouts but it was dragged back with 4km to go as Fabio Jakobsen and Shane Archbold (both Deceuninck - Quick-Step) hit the deck.

A motorbike chose the wrong side of the road and caused a small slit again at the front but it was again dragged back together with W52-FC Porto and Caja Rural led into the final two kilometres.

But Deceuninck - Quick-Step set up Bennett perfectly into the final few hundred metres with another stage favourite Pascal Ackermann (Bora-Hansgrohe) nowhere to be seen.

Results

Volta ao Algarve 2021 stage one, Lagos to Portimão (189.5km)

1. Sam Bennett (Irl) Deceuninck - Quick-Step, in 4-37-41

2. Danny Van Poppel (Ned) Intermarché-Wanty-Gobert Matériaux

3. Jon Aberasturi (Esp) Caja Rural-Seguros RGA

4. Stanisław Aniołkowski (Pol) Bingoal-Pauwels Sauces-Wallonie Bruxelles

5. Iúri Leitão (Por) Tavfer-Measindot-Mortágua

6. Michael Mørkøv (Den) Deceuninck - Quick-Step

7. Jarrad Drizners (Aus) Hagens Bermans-Axeon

8. Rui Oliveira (Por) UAE Team Emirates

9. Ethan Hayter (GBr) Ineos Grenadiers

10. Mikel Aristi (Esp) Euskaltel-Euskadi, all at same time.

General classification after stage one

1. Sam Bennett (Irl) Deceuninck - Quick-Step, in 4-37-41

2. Danny Van Poppel (Ned) Intermarché-Wanty-Gobert Matériaux

3. Jon Aberasturi (Esp) Caja Rural-Seguros RGA

4. Stanisław Aniołkowski (Pol) Bingoal-Pauwels Sauces-Wallonie Bruxelles

5. Iúri Leitão (Por) Tavfer-Measindot-Mortágua

6. Michael Mørkøv (Den) Deceuninck - Quick-Step

7. Jarrad Drizners (Aus) Hagens Bermans-Axeon

8. Rui Oliveira (Por) UAE Team Emirates

9. Ethan Hayter (GBr) Ineos Grenadiers

10. Mikel Aristi (Esp) Euskaltel-Euskadi, all at same time.

Tim Bonville-Ginn
Tim Bonville-Ginn

Hi, I'm one of Cycling Weekly's content writers for the web team responsible for writing stories on racing, tech, updating evergreen pages as well as the weekly email newsletter. Proud Yorkshireman from the UK's answer to Flanders, Calderdale, go check out the cobbled climbs!


I started watching cycling back in 2010, before all the hype around London 2012 and Bradley Wiggins at the Tour de France. In fact, it was Alberto Contador and Andy Schleck's battle in the fog up the Tourmalet on stage 17 of the Tour de France.


It took me a few more years to get into the journalism side of things, but I had a good idea I wanted to get into cycling journalism by the end of year nine at school and started doing voluntary work soon after. This got me a chance to go to the London Six Days, Tour de Yorkshire and the Tour of Britain to name a few before eventually joining Eurosport's online team while I was at uni, where I studied journalism. Eurosport gave me the opportunity to work at the world championships in Harrogate back in the awful weather.


After various bar jobs, I managed to get my way into Cycling Weekly in late February of 2020 where I mostly write about racing and everything around that as it's what I specialise in but don't be surprised to see my name on other news stories.


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