Hugh Carthy was happy to animate the race and show his form on stage two of the Tour of Britain.
Speaking at the finish line in Barnstaple, the EF-Education rider spoke about how he enjoyed getting out and attacking the peloton rather than waiting for the race to unfold in front of him.
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“Its nice to get into the race, fighting and attacking instead of being sat in the group behind waiting for the sprint or whatever. You’ve got a to be a bit wary of trying too early, when its 30 or 40 kilometres it seems a long way out to go, but if you try it and time passes pretty quickly.”
Carthy now sits 10th overall after finishing in that position on stage two. The former Caja-Rural rider earmarked this stage as one to attack, but was hoping to break out earlier than he eventually did,
“In a way, up until I attacked it was a lot easier than I expected, I wanted to try something on the longer climb after 120km but the climb was too easy and it was it was too bunched up to go anywhere into a headwind. So I was just waiting until the first of the kickers.
“Luckily one guy came with me [Matt Holmes – Madison-Genesis] and after that [Julian] Alaphilippe came across on the real climb.
The Quick-Step rider re-enacted some of the skills that delivered the Frenchman two stage wins and a polka dot jersey at the Tour de France, showcasing not only his climbing ability but then forcing the pace on the descent before both of them were eventually caught by the elite group of riders.
“I was hanging on a bit,” Carthy admitted.
“Some of those corners – half the time it’s a straight corner the other half it’s a brick wall.”
Despite his top-10 GC position at the moment, the Preston-born rider doesn’t expect to feature in the final mix up when the Tour finishes in London on Sunday. Carthy said he is expecting a rider from the elite group that finished behind stage winner Cameron Meyer and current race leader Alessandro Tonelli to take the overall title.
“The quality in that group speaks for itself. I’d be happy with a nice result on the GC or a good placing on a stage, who knows I’ve not good a track record in this race – crashing out on stage two [in 2013 and 2014] so I’m just happy to get around.”