The rain came in the final circuits around the capitol city of Sacramento, California. Then the Sky opened up in style.
Young Brit Ben Swift of Team Sky won the second stage of the Tour of California — which counts as the first one after yesterday’s snow cancellation. He beat Peter Sagan (Liquigas) and Milan San Remo winner, Matt Goss (HTC-Highroad) who went too early.
It was a wild scramble in the rain with slick corners and nerves tested. Entering the three circuits of Sacramento, it was Saxo Bank riding up front for their sprinter Sebastien Haedo. However, a well-drilled Team Sky dominated the final kilometer.
The 23 year Swift takes the win and the first leader’s jersey and everyone is thrilled there was actually a bike race and not snowboarding in the snows of Lake Tahoe.
The truncated stage, originally starting up in North Lake Tahoe, was forced to come down in altitude to avoid the snow. That knocked the route down to 113km with three 3.2km circuits around town. The crowds were out in force and the action was fast and hectic but nobody went down on the roads,
That is, unless you count sprint powerhouse HTC-Highroad. Last year it was Mark Cavendish winning in Sacramento and taking the golden jersey. But the Manxman is in Italy and his stand-in Matthew Goss had a tough time. They went down to Sky today, who did an impressive imitation of the classic Cavendish train.