Vernon Wins Stage 1 of Tour de Romandie
Stage 1 of Tour de Romandie followed yesterday’s exciting prologue in Port Valais. Soudal-QuickStep’s Josef Cerny started today’s stage 1 as leader of the race on a 170.9-kilometer route that took the Tour de Romandie peloton from Crissier to Vallee de Joux. The stage featured two category 2 climbs and one smaller category 3 challenge.
Julien Bernard (Trek-Segafredo), Michael Schär (AG2R-Citroen), and Dario Dillo (Q36.5 Continental Team) formed the day’s long breakaway group and established a small lead that appeared manageable for the favorites in the main peloton.
General classification leader Cerny was dropped on the category 2 Mauborget climb along with Magnus Cort (EF Education-EasyPost), but Cerny quickly regained contact with the main peloton once the riders had reached the plateau that followed the peak of the climb.
Eventually, the breakaway trio was caught by the main peloton and the riders carried on towards the finish while a group of approximately 40 riders had been dropped following the uphill challenges of the day. At this point the main peloton group was led by Soudal-QuickStep and EF Education-EasyPost.
With 15 kilometers left of stage 1 the Tour de Romandie peloton was still together, except for the group of riders that had been dropped. The dropped group included the sprinters who had proven to be too heavy to be able to keep up with the peloton on the climbs of the day.
In the final ten kilometers the peloton was headed by Soudal-QuickStep, Jumbo-Visma, Team DSM, Jayco-Alula, and Lotto-Dstny. The scene was set for a mass sprint finish.
Ethan Vernon won the sprint for Team Soudal-QuickStep, while Thibau Nys finished in second place for Team Trek-Segafredo. Lotto-Dstny’s Milan Menten completed the podium. Romain Bardet (Team DSM) surprisingly took part in the sprint and finished fourth.