Team Sunweb’s Edward Theuns finished in 13th place at the opening stage of the Tour of Britain today, after attempts to go clear on the final climb of the day did not prevail with the stage concluding with a bunch sprint.
A six man group broke clear in the early kilometres of the stage, with the peloton keeping them on a relatively short leash throughout the day as their lead maxed around the three minute marker. At 12 kilometres to go the last man from the break was brought back and the peloton fought for position ahead of the final climb of the day.
As expected various riders made their move on the climb, with Edward Theuns close to making the leading group. A four man move was brought back and one rider was to lead the race into the final kilometres, but was caught with just one left to race. As things concluded with a bunch sprint Edward sprinted to a solid 13 place.
Edward said: “We knew the last climb was tricky being so close to the finish. I was a bit to far behind when we got to the bottom of the climb and when the attack went, I only came 5 metres short of being with those four guys over the top of the climb. After that I tried to recover for the sprint, but it has been a long time since I’ve done a sprint for myself, so I need some time to get back into it. But I’m happy with the good legs and I’m looking forward to more chances this week.”
Team Sunweb coach Luke Roberts said: “It was a nice opening stage here in Britain with some great crowds and also the sun out. A small break was kept close throughout the day then the race opened up on a short explosive climb with 7 kilometres to go. Edward was close to going with an attacking group of four but chose in the end to back to the chasing peloton. The stage eventually came down to a sprint, unfortunately Edward didn’t get the run he hoped for and finished just outside the top 10.”