Greipel opens 2018 in style
MACHESTER – Agence France-Presse
Germany’s Andre Greipel opened his 2018 season in style when he claimed the first stage of the Tour Down Under in the South Australian town of Lyndoch yesterday.
Greipel timed his final sprint to perfection to overpower young Australian Caleb Ewan in the last 50 meters and claim a record 17th stage win in the first UCI race of the year.
World champion Peter Sagan from Slovakia (BORA-Hansgrohe) edged Italian Elia Viviani (Quick-Step Floors) to take third, with another Italian, Simone Consonni (UAE Team Emirates), in fifth place.
Favorites for the general classification Richie Porte and Jay McCarthy finished safely in the peloton in a stage that was designed to produce a sprint finish in the wine-growing Barossa Valley town.
Greipel said the sprint had worked out perfectly for him.
“It was a pretty fast sprint but I thought I could wait as long as possible and I did a nice sprint I guess,” he said. “It’s nice to be back here this way after a few years of absence.”