Sam Bennett storms to Tour de Slovenia stage win, race lead

Posted on: June 15th, 2017

Sam Bennett storms to Tour Slovenie stage win

Ireland’s Sam Bennett takes the win at the Tour de Slovenie, this third victory of the season so far. He now also leads the race.

 

Sam Bennett storms to Tour Slovenie stage win

 

Sam Bennett has stormed to a stage win at the Tour de Slovenie and taken the race lead for his troubles.

Having gone so close to a stage win at the Giro but come up just about short in the end, Bennett enjoyed his win yesterday.

In took the opening stage from Koper to Kocevje from Sonny Colbrelli (Bahrain-Merida) and Luka Mezgec (Orica-Scott).

The 159.4km ended in big bunch sprint after the early breakaway men had been swept up.

An escape group of nine men would ride clear before the early, and only climb of the day; the cat 2 Crni Kal.

And while those up front combined well and established a lead of over four minutes, the mostly flat stage meant they were up against it.

 

Sam Bennett storms to Tour Slovenie stage win

 

Bennett’s squad along with Bahrain-Merida and the Dimension Data squad of the returning Mark Cavendish ensured the sprinters would have their day.

After the gap was prevented from growing too big, the pace was wound up in the bunch and with 20km remaining the gap was down to less than one minute.

The breakaway hung on doggedly though; the last of them only caught with 7km remaining.

And when Bennett got a look at the finish line and a lead-out the victory and leader’s green jersey were both his.

A photofinish was needed, but to separate 2nd and 3rd rather than decide the victor.

There are two more flat stages, today and Sunday; with a summit finish tomorrow.

So while he mountain finish on Saturday will scupper Bennett’s hopes of an overall win, he has two more stage win opportunities.

Yesterday’s triumph was this third of the year, having won Race Melbourne and a stage of Paris-Nice in recent months.

Stage 1: Koper – Kocevje (159.4km)

1 Sam Bennett (Irl) Bora-Hansgrohe 3:49:46
2 Sonny Colbrelli (Ita) Bahrain-Merida
3 Luka Mezgec (Slo) Orica-Scott
4 Roberto Ferrari (Ita) Team UAE Emirates
5 Marco Canola (Ita) Nippo – Vini Fantini
6 Rok Korosec (Slo) Amplatz – Bmc
7 Ziga Horvat (Slo) Adria Mobil
8 Andrea Palini (Ita) Androni Giocattoli
9 Rafal Majka (Pol) Bora-Hansgrohe
10 Mark Cavendish (GBr) Dimension Data
11 Iuri Filosi (Ita) Nippo – Vini Fantini
12 Alois Kankovsky (Cze) Elkov – Author Cycling Team
13 Jan Polanc (Slo) Team UAE Emirates
14 Jack Haig (Aus) Orica-Scott
15 Jakub Mareczko (Ita) Wilier Triestina

 

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