Dylan Groenewegen (Team LottoNL-Jumbo) won the opening stage of the Tour of Guangxi, sprinting to victory ahead of Max Walscheid (Team Sunweb) and Fabio Jakobsen (Quickstep-Floors) respectively.
The Tour of Guangxi got underway with just a short 107km stage around Beihai and the flat nature of the parours ensured a fast stage. Team Dimension Data were in the mix from early on as Jay Thomson made the early 6-rider break of the day.
With the peloton not prepared to let the break get all that far up the road, Thomson returned to the main group but only after picking up a few valuable bonus seconds at the intermediate sprint. Team LottoNL-Jumbo and Groupama-FDJ then kept the race under control all the way to line, resulting in a mass sprint finish.
Our African Team worked well to position Janse van Rensburg for the final and he produced a good sprint to bag 6th place across the line, against a strong sprinting field. On the GC, thanks to his early race tactics, Thomson sits 7th overall with Janse van Rensburg in 10th place.
Jay Thomson – Rider
Today was always destined to be a bunch sprint and with so many sprints this week, we decided to try put someone in the break to get some bonus seconds. After a lot attack’s the first 15km I managed to make the breakaway of 6 guys, but after the first sprint Quickstep decide to shut it down and only 3 guys went off the front for the last lap. At that point it was all about trying to help Reinardt for the final sprint. It was a mess in the last 5kms but Bernie and Reinie did a great job at coming to the front as late as possible. Reinie did a good sprint to pick up 6th. Of course we want more but we will keep at it and hopefully we can pick up a good result this week. Reinie definitely has the chance to do a really good GC here.