Hold my beer, Tadej: Jonas Vingegaard wins at his first opportunity in 2023

Jumbo-Visma's Dane flies off the front of the bunch to take victory at O Gran Camiño

Jonas Vingegaard
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Anything Tadej Pogačar can do arch rival Jonas Vingegaard can do, well, just as well it seems.

The Slovenian threw down the gauntlet to the Dane earlier this month by coming off his winter break and immediately winning his first race, today Vingegaard has responded in kind taking the first win he had a shot at on stage two of the O Gran Camiño race in Spain.

The opening stage yesterday had to be cancelled due to snow making Friday’s uphill finish the first opportunity for one of the riders to get their hands in the air.

The Jumbo-Visma captain did not disappoint. The final 4km climb up the Monte Trega in Galicia Region in Northern Spain was approached with speed and Vingegaard towards the front of the peloton.

With his team-mates fading away Vingegaard launched a stingingly powerful acceleration with 2.3km left to race up the hill, not waiting for the cobbles on the final section of the climb to make the difference.

Cofidis gave chase up the 7.5% slope but Vingegaard had gone and went on to cross the line alone 21 seconds ahead of his nearest challenger. 

Behind him Cofidis powered the chase but Herrada had to settle for third with Ion Izagirre. Second was Saudi Tour winner Ruben Guerreiro (Movistar).

Jumbo-Visma had ridden an authoritative race throughout the day chasing the day’s break for a good chunk of the 184km stage and power him into position on the lower slopes of the climb before every member of the Dutch squad was spent.

Vingegaard now has to defend his lead on tomorrow’s mountainous stage, which also feature an uphill finish. Then also hang in on the relatively flat final 18km time trial. 

If he continues to have the legs he had today however it seems quite plausible he will want to put Pogačar on notice by winning three stages in his first stage race as the UAE Emirates captain did.

The superstar rivals are set to face off for the first time since the 2022 Tour de France at Paris Nice in just over a week’s time. There will also be Simon Yates (Jayco-AlUla), Jack Haig (Bahrain Victorious) and Romain Bardet (DSM).

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Having trained as a journalist at Cardiff University I spent eight years working as a business journalist covering everything from social care, to construction to the legal profession and riding my bike at the weekends and evenings. When a friend told me Cycling Weekly was looking for a news editor, I didn't give myself much chance of landing the role, but I did and joined the publication in 2016. Since then I've covered Tours de France, World Championships, hour records, spring classics and races in the Middle East. On top of that, since becoming features editor in 2017 I've also been lucky enough to get myself sent to ride my bike for magazine pieces in Portugal and across the UK. They've all been fun but I have an enduring passion for covering the national track championships. It might not be the most glamorous but it's got a real community feeling to it.