Crashes, heat Katusha played their part in shaping the day's action at the Tour of Oman. Photos by Graham Watson
Matteo Trentin in a crash on stage three of the 2015 Tour of Oman
Matteo Trentin (Etixx-QuickStep) was forced to quit the 2015 Tour of Oman on Thursday after being involved in a mass pile-up that also caught out a swathe of his team-mates and riders from Giant-Alpecin.
Crashes aside, the flat, hot and dusty stage was tightly controlled by the peloton, with a three-man escape group given little in the way of room as the race reached its final 20 kilometres with the pace driven on by the sprinters’ teams.
Alexander Kristoff (Katusha) prevailed in the bunch sprint to the line in Al Mussanah Sports City, adding another victory to his collection of three stage wins from the preceding Tour of Qatar.
Fabian Cancellara (Trek Factory Racing) finished safely in the bunch to retain his overall grip on the general classification with three stages remaining in the race.
A hot day awaited the riders, so teams made sure that they had plenty of drinks at hand
The race holds one-minute’s silence for former pro rider Claude Criquielion, who passed away the day before
Eddy Merckx discusses bikes with Sean Yates and Tristan Hoffman
Eddy Merckx chats with race leader Fabian Cancellara
The sparse landscape of Oman presents little in the way of shade or shelter for the riders
Preben van Hecke leads the day’s escape
Alexander Kristoff took the stage win – although it was a narrow victory
Classification leaders assemble on the podium, with overall leader Fabian Cancellara (centre) in the red jersey