Dylan Groenewegen (LottoNL-Jumbo) won the opening stage at the Volta ao Algarve that finished in a bunch sprint in Lagos. The Dutchman won the close sprint ahead of Arnaud Démare (FDJ) and Hugo Hofstetter (Cofidis, Solutions Credits).
Groenewegen’s stage victory puts him in the first leader’s jersey of the five-day race, a position he has already been in this season after he won the opening stage at the Dubai Tour earlier this month.
Cofidis tried to get into the final mix but weren’t strong enough to take on the dominant lead-out trains for LottoNL-Jumbo and FDJ.
FDJ led through the final roundabout onto the finishing stretch, but Groenewegen mastered the final sprint, patiently keying off of his lead-out men while keeping a close eye Démare.
Starting in Albufeira with a rolling 192.6km to Lagos it was always going to be a day for the sprinters.
There were two gentle climbs; a category 4 over Aldeia do Matos (43.9km) and a category 3 over Eira da Cevada (84.6km). The stage also included two intermediate sprints; in Loule (69.6km) and Odiaxere located at roughly 15km to the finish line in Lagos.
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