Not an easy defense for Malori
12 March 2015

Tirreno-Adriatico (st. 2)

Stress and crashes mark Adriano's day in azzurro; Italian keeps GC lead in Tirreno-Adriatico with same time as Sagan (TCS). Debusschere (LTS) victorious in Cascina

It was an incredibly fast day -barely three and a half hours to cover the 153km trip from Camaiore to Cascina- for the bunch of Tirreno-Adriatico in its second day of racing, a day which started with a smile for the Movistar Team with Adriano Malori in the lead and ended up with much stress, yet with no incidents for the Blues.

The Italian kept the Maglia Azzurra as first in the overall standings after spending most of the stage working hard, together with Ventoso, Castroviejo and Amador, to protect Nairo Quintana on his way to the mountain stages of Saturday and Sunday, and fortunately got unscathed through the two crashes -the latter just 200m from the end- which broke the bunch up before the sprint.

Jens Debusschere (LTB) claimed the volata in front of Peter Sagan (TCS), whose 6-second bonus by finishing 2nd took him into a tie against Malori. The Traversetolo-based rider still conserved his leader jersey after winning yesterday, and will enjoy another 24 hours in azzurro en route to another predictable sprint in Arezzo (203km.)

REACTION / Adriano Malori: I'm happy to keep this jersey for another day, even more after such a hard race. Stress was over the top in the last 70km; wind picked up and we started looking for gaps into the bunch, always pushing, so far away from the finish. That really crushed the nerves of many, and it's normal that crashes like today's happen in roads where 200 riders don't really fit together. Fortunately, we got through all of them and Nairo completed the day without a single bruise, so everything's OK.

I think Sagan, Cancellara or Van Avermaet himself might take the jersey away from me in such a finishing slope tomorrow. Still, one stage victory and two days in the lead is something of marvellous – let's hope we can add another good result on Tuesday."