In a sprint from a large breakaway group, Sacha Modolo (Lampre-Merida) took the win from Arnaud Demare (FDJ.fr) and Alexander Kristoff (Katusha) during the 2nd stage of the 3 Days of De Panne.
What looked like a big bunch sprint stage on paper turned out to be a smaller bunch sprint with the majority of the big name sprinters present. This situation came about when 24 riders attacked the bunch after around 115km of racing. 7 riders had already got away earlier in the day and had up to a 7 minute lead at one point.
Once the large chase group got away from the peloton though the early leaders were reeled in rather quickly under the impetus of the Omega Pharma – QuickStep riders in the chase. The catch was made at 60km to go and with an advantage of 3 minutes over the peloton for the 32 rider lead group. The peloton was largely reduced but still organised a chase to bring the break to within 1’20”, that was as close as they got though.
Unfortunately Team MTN-Qhubeka p/b Samsung had no representation in the break along with Wanty Groupe Gobert, the two teams chased valiantly but with all the main sprinters up ahead it was not to be. The peloton eventually rolled in over 3 minutes down.
Stage 3a – De Panne > De Panne (109.7km)
A short stage meaning a really fast stage, with an undulating run into the finish the race could break up here.
Stage 3b – De Panne > De Panne (14.3km) Individual Time Trial
With 3 180 degree turns to deal with, a lot of power will be needed on this technical course.
Staff: Michel Cornelisse (Sports Director), Dr Jarrad van Zuydam (Doctor), Hagen Bernutz (Soigneur), Ian Blackburn (Soigneur), Nico Beyens (Soigneur), Jim Bryan (Mechanic), Heiko Henrici (Mechanic), Werrner Lenk (Mechanic), Stevie Chritaens (Mechanic)