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Tour of Britain 2019: Dylan Groenewegen sprints to yellow jersey in opening stage win

Martin James
7 Sep 2019

Dutchman beats Italian duo as sprinters have their day in the sun in Scotland

Image credit: Eurosport

Dylan Groenewegen (Jumbo-Visma) won the first stage of the 2019 Tour of Britain, dominating a sprint finish into Kirkcudbright.

The Dutchman came around Matteo Trentin (Mitchelton-Scott) to cross the line well clear, with Davide Cimolai also rounding his fellow Italian to finish second.

The end of the 201.5km stage, which started with a circuit around Glasgow to kick off the 2019 Tour, saw highly rated Mathieu van der Poel (Corenden-Circus) unable to build on a good leadout to finish any higher than fourth, while Ben Swift (Team Ineos) roundout out the top five.

Dimension-Data's Mark Cavendish, seeking his first Tour of Britain stage win since 2013, didn't contest the sprint as he continues his long comeback from injury, but finished solidly in the main field in 30th place.

The 10-second time bonus at the finish saw Groenewegen take the race’s first leader’s jersey ahead of tomorrow’s second stage in Kelso, with Canyon’s Rory Townsend picking up some bonus time during the day’s break to sit second overall, three seconds down.

The day’s breakaway stayed away for most of a stage contested in pleasantly warm and sunny conditions, completely dry and bathed in sunshine.

A larger initial group also including the likes of Conor Dunne was pared back to a quartet of Townsend, James Fouche (Wiggins-Le Col), Jake Scott (SwiftCarbon) and Dries De Bondt (Corenden-Circus).

The peloton kept them on a short leash, however, allowing them enough of a gap that Scott was able to bag the points over all three climbs of the day, the final of which came with only a little more than 10km to ride.

But this one was always going to be a target for the sprinters, and the catch was made in plenty of time over the winding roads into Kirkcudbright to ensure for the strong men to lead the quick men to the line.