Colombian Molano claims home tour stage win, Bernal stays in hunt

Duitama (Colombia) (AFP) – Colombia’s Juan Sebastian Molano continued UAE Group Emirates’ outstanding get started to the year by sprinting to victory on the next stage of the Tour Colombia on Wednesday as reigning Tour de France winner Egan Bernal concluded securely in the pack.

Ecuador’s Jonathan Caicedo retained the leader’s yellow jersey he claimed when his EF Pro Cycling squad gained Tuesday’s opening team time-trial following also finishing in the peloton.

Molano, 25, run residence in advance of compatriot Alvaro Hodeg at the finish of the 152km phase from Paipa to Duitama, with Israel’s Itamar Einhorn in third.

“The team did an wonderful occupation, I am delighted to have redeemed myself and returned to winning techniques,” Molano, who had some time off previous 12 months because of to a damaged hand, informed ESPN.

“There are nonetheless various levels to occur … I am going to be calmer for the reason that I know I’ve presently gained and I do not have this pressure any much more so I can work superior.”

Fellow Colombian sprinter Fernando Gaviria gained three levels for UAE in the Tour de San Juan in Argentina a pair of weeks in the past.

Caicedo taken care of his direct in the over-all standings in advance of 3 staff-mates on the similar time, together with Colombian pair Sergio Higuita and Daniel Martinez who are predicted to problem for the closing victory.

“I’m going to make the most of this jersey for as prolonged as I can, but at the same time if I can combat to the stop, I’ll be there,” stated Caicedo, 26.

“The key purpose is to win the Tour Colombia with whichever 1 of us three, it would not subject if it really is Higuita, Martinez or myself.”

Bernal, the inaugural winner of this race two years back, moved up to eighth in the overall standings at 46sec, a person area ahead of Ineos workforce-mate and reigning Giro d’Italia champion Richard Carapaz of Ecuador.

Thursday’s third stage covers 177km from Paipa to Sogamoso and incorporates two fourth category climbs.

The entire six-working day tour is raced at above 2,500m with Sunday’s finale ending on the climb to the Puerto de El Verjon at 3,290m.

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