Kuss, Tratnik and Van Aert hold on in mountain stage Volta ao Algarve

Kuss, Tratnik and Van Aert hold on in mountain stage Volta ao Algarve

Sepp Kuss and Jan Tratnik rode into the top five on the tricky second stage of the Volta ao Algarve. The duo from Visma | Lease a Bike rode up the flanks of the Alto de Foía with the best riders. Kuss sprinted to third place, Tratnik completed the top five. Wout van Aert could also keep up for a long time on the climb.

With Kuss, Tratnik, Van Aert and Milan Vader, Team Visma | Lease a Bike was well prepared for the final climb, the highlight of the second stage of the Volta ao Algarve. Van Aert saw this tricky climb as a good test and could keep up for a long time. In the final kilometre, when the lead group was reduced to around 15 riders, he struggled to maintain the pace. Daniel Felipe Martinez sprinted to victory, with Kuss and Tratnik not far behind.

"We can be happy with today's performance”, a satisfied sports director Marc Reef said. "We knew that we were not the favourites to win. Van Aert could hold on for a long time, but in the end, he came up just a little too short. The agreement was that we would see how long he would last. That turned out to be until the final kilometre. That's something to be happy about.”

"We can be very pleased with the performance today"

Marc Reef

With a time trial and a tricky mountain stage still to come, Reef is adamant about the team leader. "Tratnik is our man for the GC. He has a strong time trial in his legs and, strengthened by his good form, can settle at the top of the general classification. What he, Kuss and Van Aert showed today certainly makes us happy at this stage of the season.”

Related updates