Posted by Editoress on 02/6/14
Garmin-Sharp continued to flex its collective muscle on the roads of Victoria, as former race champion Nathan Haas held off all-comers in a long, uphill bunch sprint to claim stage one of the Jayco Herald Sun Tour in Ballarat.
After Kiwi teammate Jack Bauer snared the Jayco Herald Sun Yellow Jersey for the American WorldTour outfit in Wednesday evening’s city centre prologue, Haas assumed the leaders mantle with his powerful display up Sturt Street.
Earlier in the stage, it was a three man breakaway that made the early escape from the peloton on the outskirts of Geelong, with Thomas Hamilton (Jayco Australian U23 National Team), Alberto Bettiol (Cannondale Pro Cycling) and Nathan Elliott (African Wildlife Safaris Cycling) gaining as much as three minutes 26 second advantage over the main field.
After looking shaky at stages, the break held together to the top of the first Budget Forklifts King of the Mountain climb, a category one ascent up Glenmore Hill.
Hamilton claimed maximum points on the climb, leading Bettiol and Elliott across the summit with 47 kilometres remaining in the stage and a diminishing two minutes 33 second advantage over the peloton.
Hitting maximum grades of 27 percent, the brutal climb wreaked havoc in the peloton, forcing the field to fracture.
A group of 15 riders emerged at the front, giving chase to the three-man group up the road.
Orica-GreenEDGE flexed their muscle, with five of their six riders - including race favourite Gerrans - amongst the aggressors in the chase.
Damien Howson was the sole rider from the Australian WorldTour outfit unable to join the chase.
Eventual stage winner Haas and Garmin-Sharp teammates Von Hoff and Bauer were also in the chase group.
Reeling in the breakaway on the descent of Glenmore Hill, the now lead group of 18 established a 32 second buffer over the peloton, before the bulk of riders came back together again over the top of the second Budget Forklifts King of the Mountain climb, the category four Mount Egerton, and would power on across the remaining 28 kilometres to the finish line in Ballarat.
For their efforts in the breakaway, Hamilton earned the Budget Forklifts King of the Mountain Jersey, while Bettiol claimed the Subaru Orange Most Aggressive Jersey.
Haas added the Chain Reaction Cycles Green Sprinters Jersey to his haul from the stage, while 20-year-old Harry Carpenter of the Jayco Australian U23 National Team moved into the State Government of Victoria White Under 23 Jersey after finishing 28th on the stage, and moving to 14th overall.
|Prologue (February 5th): Melbourne ITT, 2.5 km||Time||Gap|
|1 Jack Bauer (NZl) Garmin Sharp||3:00.90|
|2 Tom Scully (NZl) New Zealand Team||3:01.81||0.91|
|3 William Clarke (Aus) Drapac Pro Cycling||3:02.51||1.61|
|4 Felix English (Irl) Rapha Condor JLT||3:02.61||1.71|
|5 Nathan Haas (Aus) Garmin Sharp||3:03.18||2.28|
|6 Steele von Hoff (Aus) Garmin Sharp||3:04.18||3.28|
|7 Rohan Dennis (Aus) Garmin Sharp||3:05.45||4.55|
|8 Neil van der Ploeg (Aus) Avanti Cycling Team||3:05.60||4.70|
|9 Simon Clarke (Aus) Orica-GreenEDGE||3:05.99||5.09|
|10 Germain Burton (GBr) British National Team||3:06.04||5.14|
|54 Guillaume Boivin (Can) Cannondale Pro Cycling||3:13.02||12.12|
|Stage 1: Geelong to Ballarat, 125k|
|1 Nathan Haas (Aus) Garmin Sharp||3:04:12|
|2 Matthew Goss (Aus) Orica-GreenEDGE|
|3 Jonathan Cantwell (Aus) Drapac Pro Cycling|
|4 Simon Clarke (Aus) Orica-GreenEDGE|
|5 Neil Van Der Ploeg (Aus) Avanti Cycling Team|
|6 Pat Shaw (Aus) Kordamentha Real Estate - Team Australia|
|7 Guillaume Boivin (Can) Cannondale Pro Cycling|
|8 Simon Gerrans (Aus) Orica-GreenEDGE|
|9 Patrick Bevin (NZl) New Zealand Team|
|10 Anthony Giacoppo (Aus) Avanti Cycling Team||all s.t.|
|1 Nathan Haas (Aus) Garmin-Sharp||3:07:05|
|2 Jack Bauer (NZl) Garmin-Sharp||0:07|
|3 William Clarke (Aus) Drapac Pro Cycling||0:09|
|4 Matthew Goss (Aus) Orica-GreenEDGE||s.t.|
|5 Steele von Hoff (Aus) Garmin-Sharp||0:11|
|6 Simon Clarke (Aus) Orica-GreenEDGE||0:12|
|7 Neil Van Der Ploeg (Aus) Avanti Cycling Team|
|8 Jonathan Cantwell (Aus) Drapac Pro Cycling||both s.t.|
|9 Simon Gerrans (Aus) Orica-GreenEDGE||0:13|
|10 Anthony Giacoppo (Aus) Avanti Cycling Team||s.t.|
|28 Guillaume Boivin (Can) Cannondale Pro Cycling||0:20|
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