The 25-year-old Luxembourger is sixth, just a handful of seconds off the podium.
Stage 2 of the Volta a Catalunya rolled out from Mataró – a town dating from the Roman times, but better known for the fact that the first railway in Spain's history was inaugurated there, back in 1848 – and took the bunch in the province of Tarragona, to Valls, which featured for the first time in the race 82 years ago.
Following his victory on Monday, Alvaro Hodeg began the day in the white-green jersey, which made him the first Colombian rider to lead a World Tour race this year, and the 21-year-old was permanently protected by his Quick-Step Floors teammates throughout the day, before being dropped on Col de Lilla (4.3km, 4.8%), a short climb on which several squads upped the pace to distance the sprinters.
On the descent, Bob Jungels remained attentive and always in the upper part of the peloton, making sure he was covered in case of a split on the fast run-in to the finish. The Luxembourg Champion's effort paid dividends, as he concluded the stage on the same time as winner Alejandro Valverde (Movistar) and jumped eleven places in the general classification, up to sixth, which bodes well ahead of the race's first mountain test.
"The team did a great job today and at one point we were even hoping that Alvaro would make it over the climb, but with some teams going full gas once the road went up, it became really difficult. I felt good and thought about fighting for a top 10 result, but as I'm for the first time here and don't know the final, I lost some positions in the last corner, which was quite a tricky one. But the good part is that the legs are there and this gives me confidence for tomorrow, when we'll see what the mountains will bring", Bob Jungels said in Valls, where the Volta a Catalunya returned after two years.
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