Martinelli takes maiden World Tour win in Tour de Pologne

Davide Martinelli (Etixx-QuickStep) delivered a major surprise in the first stage of the Tour de Pologne when his attack in the finale allowed him to narrowly keep the field at bay in Warsaw.

His teammate Fernando Gaviria beat Caleb Ewan (Orica-BikeExchange) in the sprint for second to make it a 1-2 for Etixx-QuickStep and Martinelli is of course the first leader.

The 73rd Tour de Pologne kicked off with a short 135km stage from Radzymin to Warsaw. After a flat openings section, the main part of the stage consisted of seven laps of a 13.8km circuit in the city centre. It had two small climbs in the second half, most notably a technical cobbled ascent less than two kilometres from the finish, but most expected that it would be a day for the sprinters.

With 2km to go, Bardiani took control to set up the in-form Nicola Ruffoni but they were surprised when they hit the final climb. Michal Kwiatkowski (Sky) and Zdenek Stybar (Etixx-QuickStep) attacked and Philippe Gilbert (BMC) and Davide Martinelli (Etixx-QuickStep) bridged across on the descent.

Martinelli made an immediate attack and he got a small gap while the rest of the group was brought back, with Kevin Reza leading the chase for FDJ. As Martinelli still had a small gap, Caleb Ewan was forced to launch a long sprint but it was too late. Martinelli soloed across the line and his teammate Fernando Gaviria came around Ewan to make it a 1-2 for Etixx-QuickStep.

Martinelli now leads the race with a four-second advantage over Gaviria. However, there is a big chance that he will lose the jersey to one of the sprinters in Wednesday’s flat second stage. After a flat start, the stage ends with five laps of a 14.7km circuit in Katowice. It has two small climbs but history shows that the stage is usually decided in a very fast downhill sprint.

Tour of Poland 2016 – stage 1 results (Radzymin – Warsaw):

1 Davide Martinelli (Etixx – Quick-Step)


2 Fernando Gaviria (Etixx – Quick-Step)


3 Caleb Ewan (Orica-BikeExchange)


4 Zdenek Stybar (Etixx – Quick-Step)


5 Moreno Hofland (LottoNl-Jumbo)


6 Philippe Gilbert (BMC)


7 Kévin Reza (FDJ)


8 Michal Kwiatkowski (Sky)


9 Tim Wellens (Lotto Soudal)


10 Sacha Modolo (Lampre – Merida)


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