Danny van Poppel (Team Sky) won stage 2 of the Arctic Race of Norway by beating John Degenkolb (Giant-Alpecin) and Moreno Hofland (Lotto-NLJumbo) respectively, on today’s slight uphill sprint finish.
Jay Thomson flew the Team Dimension Data for Qhubeka flag proudly on today’s 2nd stage by making the 6-rider break of the day. Thomson was one of the first attackers of the day, as he rode away with 2 other riders just 5km from the start in Mo I Rana. 3 more riders then came across to the trio a few kilometers later to complete the move.
The peloton, being controlled by Katusha, let the break ride to a lead of 5’30” before they began to peg the escapees back. While there was an early cat 1 climb, the terrain would not challenge the riders all that much and the peloton were able to time the catch without much difficulty.
Finishing with 2 local laps in Sandnessjoen, a 500m climb at a gradient 8% did spark some interest but it was not long enough to make any real difference. Thomson and co. were caught just before the start of the final ascent of the short, steep climb with FDJ now also contributing to the chase.
The peloton was able to stay together over the climb and Tyler Farrar was our man doing another stellar job to position Youcef Reguigui for the final. The finish was not totally straightforward though with the final 500m rising continually. It was a real strongman’s sprint which Van Poppel showed he was up for. Reguigui had to settle for 17th in the end.
Jay Thomson – Rider
It was good to stretch the legs in the break today. I wanted to go yesterday and it didn’t work out so I gave it another try today and it worked. The break rode well today but after the first climb we never really rode full, we were waiting to see what the peloton would do. Unfortunately on a day like today, it was always going to be a bunch sprint. Anyway, I’m happy with how the day went in the end and really love racing here in Norway.