Matteo Trentin (Mitchelton-Scott) won the second stage of the Tour of Britain 2019, snatching victory from Alex Dowsett (Katusha-Alpecin) who attacked in the closing kilometres and looked to be holding off the peloton until the final 100m.
Jasper De Buyst (Lotto-Soudal) finished second despite the best efforts of Mike Teunissen (Jumbo-Visma), throwing his bike on the line but finishing third.
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Davide Cimolai (Israel Cycling Academy) was fourth, while Ben Swift (Ineos) finished sixth, just ahead of Dowsett in seventh, his placing showing how close he came to victory.
Steve Cummings (Dimension Data) tried to make a move with 4km to go, with Van der Poel watching it closely, before Alex Dowsett (Katusha-Alpecin) went over the top and immediately put daylight between himself and the front of the peloton.
With 1.2km to go the British time trial champion still had a six second gap as Israel Cycling Academy continued to chase for Davide Cimolai.
With 100m he was swamped, the fast men having unfurled their sprints in order to catch Dowsett, with Trentin coming across the line first to take the victory.
Dylan Groenewegen (Jumbo-Visma) was distanced from the peloton along with Mark Cavendish up the final climb of the day, meaning he loses the leader’s green jersey.
Trentin is the new race leader, with Cimolai in second, 11 seconds down, while Ben Swift sits sixth, 17 seconds in arrears.
How it happened
The 165.9km stage starting and finishing in Kelso threw up three second category climbs, but was likely to once again finish in a bunch sprint.
Gediminas Bagdonas (Ag2r La Mondiale) kicked off the proceedings, attacking alongside Sam Jenner (Wiggins – Le Col) and Pete Williams (Swift Pro Cycling) after 10km of racing.
Bagdonas took the first intermediate sprint at Coldstream, ahead of Williams in second, and took the sprinter’s jersey off Rory Townsend (Canyon dhb p/b Bloor Homes) as the escapees took out a two-minute gap over the peloton.
Jumbo-Visma took responsibility on the front of the peloton, stabilising the gap around 2-45 as the breakaway headed towards the first climb of the day at Hardens Hill, with Williams taking the summit.
Bagdonas then took the next intermediate sprint at Duns to extend his lead in the points classification, with the gap coming down to around the two-minute mark.
Their advantage was further reduced to 1-30 with 70km remaining, falling to around a minute as they began to climb Scott’s View.
As the gap came down further, Mathieu van der Poel (Corendon-Circus) and Frederik Frison (Lotto-Soudal) attacked and joined the trio up the road.
However, with 30km to go, the break was caught and the bunch was all back together. Matteo Trentin then took the third intermediate sprint ahead of Rory Townsend, with Simon Clarke (EF Education First) third.
Ineos’ Pavel Sivakov attacked up the third and final climb of the day, as race leader Dylan Groenewegen (Jumbo-Visma) was dropped from the peloton. Sivakov took the summit 15 seconds ahead of the peloton, with Groenewegen now 15 seconds behind the bunch, looking unlikely to defend the green jersey.
As Mitchelton-Scott chased Sivakov, who was holding a gap of 20 seconds, they prevented Groenewegen from getting back on to the peloton.
Sivakov was caught with just under 20km to go as a sizeable group including Groenewegen and Mark Cavendish (Dimension Data) were distanced.
A reduced bunch sped back in towards Kelso, as Steve Cummings’ attempted move was marked by Van der Poel, before Dowsett came over the top, hitting out hard with 4km to go.
He maintained a gap of six seconds over the next three kilometres as Israel Cycling Academy drove the peloton. The bunch timed it well, catching Dowsett a mere 100m from the line, flooding him as Matteo Trentin won the sprint ahead of Jasper De Buyst and Mike Teunissen.
Tour of Britain 2019, stage two: Kelso to Kelso (165.9km)
1. Matteo Trentin (Ita) Mitchelton-Scott, in 3-55-53
2. Jasper De Buyst (Bel) Lotto-Soudal
3. Mike Teunissen (Ned) Jumbo-Visma
4. Davide Cimolai (Ita) Israel Cycling Academy
5. Alex Edmondson (Aus) Mitchelton-Scott
6. Ben Swift (GBr) Ineos
7. Alex Dowsett (GBr) Katusha-Alpecin
8. Simon Clarke (Aus) EF Education First
9. Tom Van Asbroeck (Bel) Israel Cycling Academy
10. Danilo Wyss (Sui) Dimension Data, all at same time
General classification after stage two
1. Matteo Trentin (Ita) Mitchelton-Scott, in 8-35-25
2. Davide Cimolai (Ita) Israel Cycling Academy, at 11 seconds
3. Jasper De Buyst (Bel) Lotto-Soudal, at same time
4. Mike Teunissen (Ned) Jumbo-Visma, at 13s
5. Simon Clarke (Aus) EF Education First, at 16s
6. Ben Swift (GBr) Ineos, at 17s
7. Mathieu van der Poel (Ned) Corendon – Circus
8. Loïc Vliegen (Bel) Wanty-Gobert
9. Tom Van Asbroeck (Bel) Israel Cycling Academy
10. Alex Edmondson (Aus) Mitchelton-Scott, all at same time