Tankink Wins Stage 1 of Deutschland Tour
Bram Tankink (Quick Step) has drawn first blood in the Deutschland Tour.
Bram Tankink (Quick Step) has drawn first blood in the Deutschland Tour. The Dutchman soloed away from Bernhard Eisel (La Francaise des Jeux) and Juan Jose Cobo Acebo (Saunier Duval) to win Stage 1, a rolling, 170-km ride from Altenburg to Plauen, in 4:00:25. Acebo took second at 0:48, and Eisel finished third three seconds later.
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The stage was ridden in cold, rainy conditions. From the start, the racing was fast. Just after the first prime (23 km), Eisel, Tankink, and Acebo attacked. T-Mobile and Gerolsteiner rode tempo but did not chase, and the trio?s lead ballooned to nearly 10:00 at 70 km. Ten km before, Kurt-Asle Arvesen (CSC) had abandoned with stomach troubles, and at 65 km, David Loosli (Lampre) crashed out of the race with an injured right knee.
The peloton refrained from chasing, and the escapees led the field by 7:30 with 47 km left. CSC joined the two German squads at the front, but the chase was halfhearted. The break would stay away.
With 16 km remaining, Tankirk, reckoning that he had no chance against his companions in a sprint, attacked them. Acebo and Eisel cooperated, but Tankirk got a gap. He crashed on a turn but survived the mishap to take the biggest victory of his career. The peloton moseyed in at 3:07.
In the overall, Tankirk leads Acebo by 0:50 and Eisel by 0:53. Stage 2 will be a 199-km ride from Pegnitz to Hohenprofil that will end with two Category 2 climbs in the last 35 km. It adds up to a victory for a solo flight or a rider in a small group. Who will win? Check in at http://www.roadcycling.com/ and find out!