Garmin-Slipstream’s Tyler Farrar followed up his impressive third-place finish in the opening stage time trial of the Vuelta a España with a fifth place finish in Stage 2 on Sunday. Farrar battled it out with the top sprinters at the end of a 202km stage that was won by German Gerald Ciolek. The American’s fifth-place finish kept him near the top of the GC standings, and he’s now fourth overall, 12 seconds behind race leader Fabian Cancellara of Switzerland.
The second stage of the three-week Vuelta was a mostly flat route through The Netherlands, from Assen to Emmen. The opening week takes riders through The Netherlands, Germany and Belgium before traveling into Spain on Thursday.
A five-man breakaway formed just 3km into Sunday’s stage and spent most of the day clear of the bunch. Farrar’s Garmin-Slipstream squad led the effort to chase down the break with strong work from riders like Ryder Hesjedal (pictured above) and the last of the break was caught with 11km to go, setting up a sprint finish.
Farrar’s British teammate David Millar paced the young American sprinter up to the front of the group 1km from the finish, but Ciolek caught all the other sprinters by surprise to take a close-fought win.
Monday’s Stage 3 takes riders into Germany, then back into The Netherlands for the finish. It’s a mostly flat stage and is expected to be another day for the sprinters.
VUELTA A ESPANA
Spain. August 29-September 20
Stage 2, Assen-Emmen, The Netherlands
1. Gerald Ciolek (Ger), Milram, 4:43:12
2. Fabio Sabatini (Ita), Liquigas), same time
3. Roger Hammond (GB), Cervelo Test Team, same time
4. Andre Greipel (Ger), Columbia-HTC, same time
5. Tyler Farrar (USA), Garmin-Slipstream, same time
1. Fabian Cancellara (Swi), Saxo Bank, 4:48:32
2. Gerald Ciolek (Ger), Milram, at 0:08
3. Tom Boonen (Bel), Quick Step, at 0:09
4. Tyler Farrar (USA), Garmin-Slipstream, at 0:12
5. Jens Mouris (Ned), Vacansoleil, at 0:14