Blues cope with heat wave in calm Australian opener
15 January 2019

Tour Down Under (st. 1)

Viviani (DQT) dominates Port Adelaide’s sprint as Blues suffer temperatures well over 40ºC, set to be repeated on Wednesday.

Coming back from a position slightly further back than normal into the sprint, Italian Elia Viviani (DQT) won the first race of the 2019 UCI WorldTour as he took honours on stage one of the Tour Down Under -129km towards Port Adelaide-. The day’s contest was held under a typical Australian summer heat wave (up to 44ºC), which could be made even worse in the upcoming days as temperatures are expected to rise slightly.

Without any gusts of wind calling for the top teams to create havoc in the peloton, it was up to LTS, SKY and DQT to keep under control a four-man breakaway -its three main survivors, with Storer (SUN), Bevin (CPT) and Lea (AUS), not caught before the final 40km- which didn’t feature the Movistar Team. The squad directed by José Luis Arrieta focused on staying away from trouble before the first real mountains on Friday (st. 4), with the climb to Corkscrew Road.

Jasha Sütterlin (20th) was, together with Lluís Mas (25th), the top Blue finisher at a bunch sprint whose protagonist should notably feature again on Wednesday. The shortened stage two -122km, almost thirty less than initially scheduled- will finish slightly uphill in Angaston.