Live Coverage of Tour de Suisse - Stage 2

Race overview:

Distance: 155km

Start Location: Frauenfeld

End Location: Frauenfeld

Stage 2 of the Tour de Suisse covers four laps of a hilly 39 km circuit course, with start and finish in Frauenfeld.

Tour de Suisse race home

Tour de Suisse race preview

Tour de Suisse start list

BMC win opening team time trial in Frauenfeld

 

 

Live commentary by susan westemeyer

  1. 18:28:34 CEST

    Thanks for joining us for live coverage of stage 2 of the Tour de Suisse. 

     

    Click here for a full stage report and photo gallery.

     

    Join us tomorrow for full stage 3 live coverage.

     

  2. 17:58:37 CEST

    “I have to say thanks to my teammates because they trusted me,” Sagan said after the stage. “I was thinking about the tactics but in he end it just happened as I thought. I’m just very happy to have won this second stage. Now I can say all the preparation that I’ve done is good. Now we can continue a little bit more relaxed in the next few days.”

    Why is he so strong here, year after year? “Well, there’s so much hard work behind all this, I’m happy about that.”

    Will he win again tomorrow? “I don’t know, I have to see tomorrow. It’s another day.”

    Are his legs good? “I hope they’re not the best in this moment because I have still to grow a little but for the Tour de France.”

  3. 17:37:34 CEST

    General classification after stage 2

    1 Stefan Küng (Swi) BMC Racing Team 4:10:24

    2 Greg Van Avermaet (Bel) BMC Racing Team 0:00:03

    3 Richie Porte (Aus) BMC Racing Team

    4 Tejay van Garderen (USA) BMC Racing Team

    5 Peter Sagan (Svk) Bora-Hansgrohe 0:00:20

    6 Michael Matthews (Aus) Team Sunweb 0:00:23

    7 Wilco Kelderman (Ned) Team Sunweb

    8 Sam Oomen (Ned) Team Sunweb

    9 Simon Gerrans (Aus) BMC Racing Team 0:00:28

    10 Gregor Mühlberger (Aut) Bora-Hansgrohe 0:00:30

  4. 17:36:11 CEST

    That is Sagan's fifth win this year, and his first one since Paris-Roubaix.

     

  5. 17:34:28 CEST

    Stage:

    1 Peter Sagan (Svk) Bora-Hansgrohe

    2 Fernando Gaviria (Col) Quick-Step Floors

    3 Nathan Haas (Aus) Katusha-Alpecin

    4 Michael Matthews (Aus) Team Sunweb

    5 Mark Padun (Ukr) Bahrain-Merida

    6 Enrico Gasparotto (Ita) Bahrain-Merida

    7 Enrico Battaglin (Ita) LottoNL-Jumbo

    8 Greg Van Avermaet (Bel) BMC Racing Team

    9 Arthur Vichot (Fra) Groupama-FDJ

    10 Steven Kruijswijk (Ned) LottoNL-Jumbo

  6. 17:33:02 CEST

    It is Sagan's 16th stage win in this race!

     

  7. 17:32:35 CEST

    Gaviria second, Nathan Haas third, and Matthews fourth.

     

  8. 17:31:54 CEST

    AFter Matthews was caught, Gaviria charged to the front to go for the win. But he was caught and passed by the World Champion.

     

  9. 17:29:59 CEST

    Küng should easily hold on to the race lead.

     

  10. 17:29:33 CEST

    Matthews had no chance and who wins but of course Sagan!

     

  11. 17:29:03 CEST

    Küng attacks! But he is caught and Matthews goes, very very early.

     

  12. 17:28:24 CEST

    Peter Sagan on Michael Matthews' wheel. One km to go!

     

  13. 17:27:25 CEST

    FDJ is the next to try, with Juraj Sagan along for the ride. But no.....

     

  14. 17:26:53 CEST

    Diego Ulissi gives it a try, along with Jakob Fuglsang and Jasper Stuyvens, but again, nothing doing.

     

  15. 17:26:09 CEST

    The 3 km marker has now been passed.  

     

  16. 17:25:10 CEST

    Or even fewer than that. The question is which sprinters may have survived so far. 

     

  17. 17:24:41 CEST

    The field, by the way, is greatly reduced, maybe 50-60 riders.

     

  18. 17:24:10 CEST

    The lead group is not working together at all and is now caught, with 5.2 km left.Sylvain Dillier tries to go again but the field catches him quickly.

     

  19. 17:23:16 CEST

    BMC turns things up a notch in the field and starts cutting into the gap.

     

  20. 17:21:58 CEST

    Trek's Stuyven is also up there.

     

  21. 17:21:22 CEST

    Both the lead group and the peloton are relatively disorganized. Bora's patrick Konrad is in the group, and possibly also Burghardt.

     

  22. 17:20:14 CEST

    That group now has nine seconds, with 9 km to go.

     

  23. 17:18:57 CEST

    Seven riders are ahead, in a very loose group, including Richeze.

     

  24. 17:17:28 CEST

    Everyone had come back together with 12 km -- which of course only means that the next attacks followed almost immediately.

     

  25. 17:16:46 CEST

    Mechanical for Philippe Gilbert, who has to wait for a new bike. He will have to make his way back up tot the field alone. 

     

  26. 17:14:14 CEST

    A largish group has formed but seems unlikely to get away.

     

  27. 17:13:38 CEST

    Küng moves to the head of the field, but almost immediately we have more attacks, with an Aqua Blue rider firt to go.

     

  28. 17:11:58 CEST

    Two sprinters won't be in at the end: Degenkolb and Kristoff have been dropped.

     

  29. 17:10:57 CEST

    Mark Padun of Bahrain Merida stayed ahead and has about 10 seconds on the field.

     

  30. 17:09:46 CEST

    Things coming more or less back together. 17 km to go.

     

  31. 17:08:06 CEST

    Porte attacks out of the peloton. A Movistar rider goes with him as do a few others.

     

  32. 17:06:02 CEST

    Küng picked up 3 seconds bonus at that sprint. That puts him ahead of all his teammates, with whom he was previously tied on time.

     

  33. 17:04:21 CEST

    Oss takes over for Burghardt.

     

  34. 17:02:51 CEST

    Marcus Burghardt is at the head of the field, controlling things for Bora teammate Peter Sagan.

     

  35. 17:02:02 CEST

    Albasini has now dropped to the back of the field, paying for his attack.

     

  36. 16:59:12 CEST

    They are all about to head up the climb for the final time.

     

  37. 16:57:35 CEST

    Küng jumps from the field to take the bonus seconds at the intermediate sprint. A Katusha rider goes with him. The two toy with the idea of staying away, but it doesn't happen.

     

  38. 16:55:57 CEST

    The break is over with 27km left to go.

     

  39. 16:53:38 CEST

    28.7km remaining from 155km

    With 12 seconds left, the four leaders start peering back over their shoulders.

     

  40. 16:51:46 CEST

    QuickStep now grinding away at the head of the peloton.

     

  41. 16:50:49 CEST

    The four leaders are back together, but the gap is only 33 seconds now.

     

  42. 16:47:10 CEST

    Albasini and Quemeneur are now alone in the lead. 

     

  43. 16:45:54 CEST

    34km remaining from 155km

    Albasini continues to lead the break group as the gap is down to 44 seconds.

     

  44. 16:44:31 CEST

    Landa was quickly back up and going.

     

  45. 16:44:09 CEST

    A crash in the field, with Mikel Landa one of those nvolved. The other two were from EF and Vini Fantini. That is Marangoli, who is alrady up on his feet. The EF rider is William Clarke, who is slowly getting up again.

     

  46. 16:39:19 CEST

    And only 1:03 later, the peloton comes through.

     

  47. 16:38:35 CEST

    The four leaders cross the finish line for the penultimate time, with Albasini leading the way. Only 39 km left to go!

     

  48. 16:33:33 CEST

    With 43 km left, the gap hs dropped to just over one minute. It is getting time anyway to start catching the break group, and the field has even more motivation now that Albasini is in that lead group.

     

  49. 16:31:46 CEST

    The peloton is crossing a bridge and someone in the field thought it would be a good idea to throw his empty bidon into the river. We do not think this is a good idea at all and hope the commissaires find out who it was. 

     

  50. 16:29:03 CEST

    QuickStep finished third yesterday, and was not dissatisfied. “With the first half of the stage packing two climbs, we decided to ride full gas from the start, because we knew it was there that we could gain time, as the second part, which contained a fast descent and flat roads, didn't present any opportunities to take an advantage. Unfortunately, we lost Iljo quite early, then Fernando tried to close the gap but it wasn't easy, while Tim had an untimely mechanical. For that reason, we were down to four riders inside the last kilometers and we lost important time there. Considering all these factors, I thing we can be satisfied with our time trial; third in this company is a good result", said sports director Tom Steels at the end of the stage.

  51. 16:25:09 CEST

    Only 50 km left to go, and the gap is right about 1:30.

     

  52. 16:22:51 CEST

    BMC, QuickStep and Lotto Soudal all with a rider each at the head of the peloton.

     

  53. 16:20:11 CEST

    Albasini is now also the virtual race leader.

     

  54. 16:17:35 CEST

    With 56 km to go, Albasini has caught the break group.

     

  55. 16:16:21 CEST

    Albasini is almost by the three leaders, and the gap to the peloton has grown again, to 1:53.

     

  56. 16:13:17 CEST

    Albasini is powering his way up, now only 43 seconds behind the leading trio.

     

  57. 16:12:27 CEST

     The third climb of the mountain produced the same results as the first two: Zaccani ahead of Quemeneur and Watson. Which should assure the young Italian of the KOM title today.

  58. 16:09:17 CEST

    Meanwhile the gap has grown to 1:51, with 60 km to go.

     

  59. 16:08:15 CEST

    As the peloton starts up the climb, Michael Albasini of Mitchelton-Scott attacks from the peloton.

     

  60. 16:06:46 CEST

    The three leaders go up the day's climb for the third time.

     

  61. 16:04:04 CEST

    63km remaining from 155km

    The gap has now grown slightly, up to 1:33.

     

  62. 16:01:28 CEST

    Astana went into the TTT with an eye to the Tour de France, unfortunately finishing next to last. According to DS Dmitriy Fofonov, “We wanted to try some strategies of racing and to do some experiments. Indeed, it was a risk, but we still have 4 weeks before the Tour and I think, it was a good moment to risk a bit and to try something new. So, some points worked as we wanted, but in some points we failure. It did not work as we could expect. But, it was a valuable experience for us, we have learned our weak points and now we have four weeks to improve it.”

  63. 15:55:35 CEST

    QuickStep has two riders at the head of the peloton and they are having quite a conversation. Probably about whether they really want to catch the break group with so many kms left, and how much time they should let the three leaders have.

     

  64. 15:52:29 CEST

    72km remaining from 155km

    With 72 km to go, we have a gap of 1:24. It is a lovely sunny day today!

     

     

  65. 15:49:06 CEST

    Team Sunweb had its time on the hot seat (seats?) yesterday before giving way to BMC. “The goal was to come over the two climbs in the beginning with a minimum of six riders and do a technically good TTT overall. As it worked out, we had already lost three riders before the top of the second climb and as a result we had to do the last 12km with just four riders. In the end we finished second which is still a good start to the race,” said team coach Marc Reef on the team’s website.

  66. 15:45:32 CEST

    That means we have finished two laps of the course,with two more to come.

     

  67. 15:44:41 CEST

    We are at roughly the halfway point of this stage, and the gap is still around the two minute mark.

     

  68. 15:40:10 CEST

    Richie Porte is one of those BMC riders worried about the future, calling it “crunch time.” While he would like to remain with the team, he is not yet ready to predict where he will be in 2019.

  69. 15:30:42 CEST

    When you hear of an expected sprint finish and Peter Sagan is in the race, you pretty much assume he will be in the mix, if not in the lead. Yesterday he said on the team’s Twitter, “Ths was my first race day after an intense training period at high altitude in the US and I feel in good shape.” Not what his rivals would have hoped to hear!

  70. 15:24:31 CEST

    He did indeed break his jaw this year, at Paris-Roubaix in a late crash. He underwent surgery and only returned to racing at the Hammer Series in Limburg the end of last month.

  71. 15:18:59 CEST

    Dutch journalist Jose Been took a look at the injuries Küng has had over the years, and it is an impressive list: “broke a vertebra (2015), had glandular fever (2015), broke his collarbone and pelvis (2016) and his jaw (2018)”.

  72. 15:14:04 CEST

    Not only a sprint, but also another mountain ranking! The second one was just like the first one: Zaccanti ahead of Quermeneur and Watson. The gap is now 1:44.

     

  73. 15:10:04 CEST

    WE have had an intermediate sprint, with the points going in this order: Watson, Quemeneur and Zaccanti.

     

  74. 14:58:58 CEST

    After 50 km of racing, the gap is down to 1:27. The field isn't eager to let them, or anyone, get away today. 

     

  75. 14:57:25 CEST

    The Dauphine has come to an end, and Geraint Thomas takes the title for Team Sky. Adam Yates of Mitchelton-Scott won the mountaintop finish of the final stage.

     

  76. 14:52:40 CEST

    Race leader Küng, 24, has spent his whole career with BMC, this being his fourth year with the team. He had quite a year in 2017, winning the national time trial title, and stages at the Tour de Romandie and the Binck Bank Tour, and finished third overall in the Tour of Britain.

  77. 14:46:36 CEST

    A lot happened in the last week of the Giro d’Italia, and it wasn’t only Chris Froome. We were there and got a look at all the action. Now we want to share it with you with our Cyclingnews Film CRESCENDO, which you can rent or buy. Do so, and give it a look!

  78. 14:41:50 CEST

    The first lap of the circuit course is done, with three more to go. The leaders' gap is under two minutes now, as BMC and QuickStep are keeping a close hand on things. 

     

  79. 14:37:37 CEST

     

    Zaccanti is the youngster of the group, at 22 years old. He is a first year pro.

  80. 14:29:38 CEST

    Quemeneur is a 34-year-old Frenchman, who has been riding professionally since 2008. He too is a domestique whose strength lies more in helping the team leaders than in bringing in personal results.
  81. 14:24:48 CEST

    Let’s take a look at the three in the escape group. Watson, 25, is an Australian riding for the Irish Aqua Blue team. He started out with Jayco-AIS in 2012, then was out of contract for a year before returning with Trek Factory Racing in 2014 and 2015. After a year with Anpost-Chainreaction, he signed with Aqua Blue in 2017. His results are, shall we say, sparse.

  82. 14:18:44 CEST

    The three leaders have conquered the day's mountain for the first time, and it went like this: Zaccanti ahead of Quemeneur and Watson. 

     

  83. 14:17:06 CEST

    One of those top riders is Rohan Dennis, who recently won the second time trial at the Giro d’Italia. He is said to be “90 percent there in negotiations" with Bahrain Merida.

  84. 14:10:31 CEST

    That was the good news for BMC. The bad news is that they still don’t have a sponsor for the coming season, and things are getting tense. Although team GM Jim Ochowicz says there are some “good prospects in the pipeline”, a number of riders have started looking around already.

  85. 14:05:03 CEST

    BMC convincingly won the opening team time trial yesterday, and – coincidentally, we are sure – Swiss rider Stefan Küng was the first over the line and thus today wears the leader’s jersey.

  86. 13:58:25 CEST

    Only seven km into the stage, the group has a 3 minute gap. That puts Zaccanti in the virtual lead.

     

  87. 13:56:27 CEST

    The trio is Perrig Quemeneur (TDE), Filippo Zaccanti (NIP) and  Calvin Watson (ABS). They already have about 1:30.

  88. 13:52:47 CEST

    We already have a three-rider break group. We will try to get the names for you.

     

  89. 13:44:40 CEST

    Here is the top ten in GC, after yesterday’s team time trial:

    1 Stefan Kung (BMC) 20:18

    2 Richie Porte (BMC)

    3 Greg Van Avermaet (BMC)

    4 Tejay van Garderen (BMC)

    5 Wilco Kelderman (Sunweb) 0:20

    6 Sam Oomen (Sunweb)

    7 Soren Kragh Andersen (Sunweb)

    8 Michael Matthews (Sunweb)

    9 Simon Gerrans (BMC) 0:25

    10 Philippe Gilbert (QuickStep) 0:27

  90. 13:39:18 CEST

    And they're off! The first km is neutralized.

     

  91. 13:32:21 CEST

    Good afternoon and welcome back to the Tour de Suisse. We will finally see some climbing today, with each of the 39km circuit course including a Cat. 3 climb. However, a bunch sprint finish is expected.