Germany's John Degenkolb Surges to Stage 2 Victory in Criterium du Dauphine 2011
A late surge for the line in stage 2 of the Criterium du Dauphine 2011 sealed Team HTC-Highroad's John Degenkolb his fifth victory of his rookie season in the pro peloton. Alexandre Vinokourov kept the overall Dauphine Libere lead.
A late surge for the line in stage 2 of the Criterium du Dauphine 2011 sealed Team HTC-Highroad's John Degenkolb his fifth victory of his rookie season in the pro peloton.
Degenkolb opened up the throttle with less than two-hundred meters to go on the technical uphill finish in Lyon, claiming the win ahead of Frenchman Samuel Dumoulin (Team Cofidis), French Sébastien Hinault and Germany's Paul Maertens.
"I'm having a super start to my career with so many wins, but this victory is very special because it's my first in a World Tour category race," Degenkolb said after being celebrated on the podium.
"It was the ideal stage for me. The day before we'd already checked out the finish and ridden up here so we knew what was coming and I knew where I had to be positioned to go for the win."
He discounted a possible Tour de France start this season, saying "I'm too young and it's not good to make too fast a start, but maybe next year it'll be possible."
"In any case, guys like me and (teammate) Tony Martin are a new generation of young riders in Germany and hopefully we'll help bring cycling to a whole new level in our country."
In the overall rankings, Alexandre Vinokourov (Team Astana) leads Jürgen Van den Broeck of Belgium and Team Omega Pharma-Lotto by 11 seconds. Team Sky's Bradley Wiggins of Great Britain moved ahead of Team BMC Racing's Cadel Evans of Australia into third place.
On Wednesday, riders have a 41 kilometer individual time trial around Grenoble to battle. The time trial follows the same route which will be part of an individual time trial in the Tour de France 2011. The Criterium du Dauphine / Dauphine Libere race, a warm-up and test race for the Tour de France, ends in La Toussuire on Sunday.