Spanish rouleur only Movistar Team to complete Queen race of Qatar worlds; Sagan (SVK) makes it two at final sprint
Slovakia’s Peter Sagan claimed his second consecutive rainbow jersey at Sunday’s World Road Race Championships in Doha, over a 257km course starting at Aspire and finishing over a 7-lap circuit in The Pearl – which was completely governed by heat and strong winds. Echelons caused by coastal gusts in the race phase down from northern Qatar, more than 170km from the finish line, split the bunch into lots of different groups, and forced the six Movistar Team riders present at the start to all pursuit unfruitfully in search for the 22-man favourites’ group.
While Castroviejo and Lobato were left soon out of contention, two groups up the road trailing behind the leaders -eventually 26, after the early break was caught- included fighters Oliveira, Ventoso, Sütterlin and most notably Imanol Erviti. Despite strong turns by the 32-year-old Spaniard into his group and even some attacks, alongside Marco Haller (AUT), at the entrance of the final circuit, Imanol wasn’t able to make up the 50-second gap halfway through the race. The man from Navarra was forced to just continue without any real chance: he finished 33rd, at 5’26” from the closing sprint, where Sagan bested Mark Cavendish (GBR, 2nd) and Tom Boonen (BEL, 3rd).