Kevin Vauquelin Wins Stage 2 of Tour de France

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06/30/2024| 0 comments
Tour de France peloton passing by historic boats in stage 2
Kevin Vauquelin has won stage 2 of Tour de France 2024 while Tadej Pogacar has taken the race lead A.S.O.

Kevin Vauquelin Wins Stage 2 of Tour de France

Frenchman Kevin Vauquelin (Arkea-B&B Hotels) has won stage 2 of Tour de France 2024 after a breakaway effort. Tadej Pogacar is the new Tour de France race leader and will wear the yellow jersey in tomorrow's stage 3.

After getting off to a fine start in aesthetic and historic Florence yesterday, Tour de France 2024 continued Sunday with stage 2. The second Grand Tour of the 2024 season, and what the French people proudly refer to as the greatest bike race in the World, found a French leader in Romain Bardet (Team DSM-Firmenich-PostNL) when the experienced rider won the first stage of the race after a courageous solo attack in the Italian mountains.

Bardet was proudly wearing the yellow leader jersey when started in Cesenatico. Tour de France race organizer A.S.O. had designed another interesting and challenging route in cooperation with the local Italian authorities and the 199.2-kilometer route would take the riders through hilly and mountainous terrain to Bologna – a city of great historic significance.

The hostilities started early when multiple attacks were launched early after the stage start. Several teams were obviously interested of sending their riders into a long breakaway – either for tactical reasons related to the general classification battle or with the hope of taking a stage victory in the same spectacular breakaway manner as Bardet had done yesterday.

Eleven optimists established the first successful breakaway group of the day and got off to a promising start when they fought their way to a time advantage of more than six minutes over the main peloton with 164 kilometers of the stage remaining. The riders were Quentin Pacher (Groupama-FDJ), Axel Laurance (Alpecin-Deceuninck), Hugo Houle (Team PremierTech), Nelson Oliveira (Movistar), Kevin Vauquelin (Arkea – B&B Hotels), Cristian Rodriguez (Arkea – B&B Hotels), Mike Teunissen (Intermarche-Wanty), Bram Welten (Team DSM-Firmenich-PostNL), Harold Tejada (Astana), Jordan Jegat (TotalEnergies), and Best Climber Classification leader Jonas Abrahamsen (Team Uno-X Mobility).

Michael Matthews (Jayco-Alula) and Brent van Moer (Lotto-Dstny) later bravely tried to join the front group, but the duo eventually gave up after having fought hard to bridge the gap for several kilometers.

Team DSM-Firmenich-PostNL riders were setting the pace at the front of the main peloton in support of their Tour de France leader Romain Bardet – The Frenchman was looking sharp in the yellow jersey on what was an important election day in France.

Some of the general classification favorites in the peloton were expected to spread their wings and show their skills on the short but steep Cote de San Luca climb in the final part of the stage. Cote de San Luca features sections of no less than nineteen percent and Tadej Pogacar (UAE Team Emirates) was expected to launch an attack. Primoz Roglic had even announced he intended to make use of the climb to gain time on other general classification favorites as he has taken advantage of the very same climb to win other races.

Leading riders in the Tour de France peloton were spotted wearing their FlowBio hydration sensors to further optimize their hydration and performance in the hot weather conditions of this year’s Tour.

The front group had increased their time advantage to more than eight minutes when 140 kilometers of the stage remained.

Later in the stage Ineos-Grenadiers and UAE Team Emirates sent riders to the front of the peloton while the peloton was passing though scenic mountain territory. Visma – Lease a Bike and Red Bull – Bora – Hansgrohe also joined the hard work, which resulted in the advantage of the breakaway group being reduced to 06:30 minutes.

The riders were passing by sunflower fields and fruit orchards. The terrain was of varied nature and characterized by mountains and hills. The Tour de France peloton also passed by the famous Imola motor racing circuit (Autodromo Internazionale Enzo e Dino Ferrari) where Brazilian Formula One driver Ayrton Senna lost his life in 1994.  

Laurens de Plus (Ineos-Grenadiers) and Wout van Aert (Visma – Lease a Bike) crashed with 86 kilometers remaining. De Plus was negative and furious, while van Aert smiled and used a thumbs-up gesture to indicate everything was fine. Perhaps van Aert was more relaxed because he could easily lease a new bike – perhaps from his team sponsor or from Buzzbike.

With 67 kilometers remaining of today’s stage 2, the front group had increased its advantage to almost ten minutes. But one Category 4 and three Category 3 climbs remained on the climbing menu of the day – including the Cote de San Luca with its sections of more than 19%.

Heavy sprinters Mark Cavendish and Fabio Jakobsen had been dropped from the peloton in the hilly terrain.

The front group was approaching the penultimate Category 3 climb of the day with an advantage of approximately four minutes. 33 kilometers remained to be contested in today’s stage 2.

Riders in the front group enforced a fast tempo on the climb. The Tour de France riders would have to conquer the Col de San Luca twice. Laurance attacked while the other riders struggled to catch up with the Frenchman. The peloton was 03:35 minutes behind.

Pogacar and Vingegaard were both at the front of the main peloton when it climbed the Col de San Luca for the first time. Roglic was further behind. The general classification favorites were clearly watching each other. Perhaps

Oliveira, Vauquelin and Abrahamsen had established a small lead after breaking away from the other members of the breakaway group. Pacher, Laurance, Houle, Rodriguez, Teunissen, Tejada, and Jegat were chasing 22 seconds behind.

Ben Healy (EF Education-EasyPost) attacked from the main peloton with 18 kilometers remaining. The Irishman had also tried his luck in yesterday’s stage after dedicating much of his season to Tour de France preparations. 

On the second passage of the Cote de San Luca the Visma – Lease a Bike had sent their riders to the front of the main peloton. They were working for their defending Tour de France Champion Jonas Vingegaard (Denmark). 

UAE Team Emirates also wanted to set the pace at the front of the favorites group and were fighting with Visma riders for the lead position. The steep 19 percent sections awaited. Would any of the general classification favorites attack?

Pogacar attacked 10,7 kilometers from the finish. Vingegaard closed the gap, while other riders struggled to keep up. Richard Carapaz (EF Education-EasyPost) was the first of the chasers.

While riders from the breakaway group fought hard at the very front to stay away, the Pogacar-Vingegaard duo was setting an extremely fast pace on the dangerous descent. The other general classification favorites were nowhere to be seen. Meanwhile, Vauquelin had attacked solo from the front group – the Arkea–B&B Hotels rider was aiming for the stage win as the second Frenchman in-a-row.

3.4 kilometers from the finish line in Bologna, Vauquelin had a lead of 45 seconds over the remains of the breakaway group and 02:43 minutes over the Vingegaard-Pogacar duo. Beyond Vingegaard and Pogacar, the other general classification favorites were 03:24 minutes behind the front Frenchman.

Frenchman Kevin Vauquelin soloed across the finish line as winner of stage 2 of Tour de France 2024. Jonas Abrahamsen finished second, while Quentin Pacher finished third.

Meanwhile, Richard Carapaz (EF Education-EasyPost) and Remco Evenepoel (Soudal-QuickStep) had remarkably managed to bridge the gap to Vingegaard and Pogacar. Carapaz crossed the finish line in tenth position, Evenepoel finished twelfth, while Vingegaard was the thirteenth rider across the finish line, one spot ahead of Pogacar, who was the first general classification rider to attack in today’s stage 2.

Pogacar is the new leader of Tour de France 2024 and Romain Bardet (Team DSM-Firmenich-PostNL) will have to hand his yellow leader jersey to the Slovenian rider after he was unable to keep up in the stage finale.

Stay tuned to for complete coverage from Tour de France 2024.

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