Team Sky touches the sky in the Fóia

Team Sky dominated the second stage of the Volta ao Algarve between Sagres and Alto de Fóia, in Monchique. Michal Kwiatkowski took the stage and Geraint Thomas conquered the yellow jersey.
The arrival coincided with a first-cat mountain climb, at the top of a 15-kilometre ascent to the highest point in the Algarve, 900 meters above sea level. Sky attacked the race at the hardest point of the climb, about 8 kilometres from the finish line. Belarusian Vasil Kiryienka isolated himself and forced his opponents to waste energy in his pursuit.
The effort of the rivals was used by Michal Kwiatkowski to overpower their rivals. Dutch Bauke Mollema (Trek-Segafredo) was second followed by Geraint Thomas, Daniel Martin (UAE Team Emirates) and Jaime Rosón (Movistar Team).
“Team Sky has run very well in the last few kilometres, putting Kiryienka ahead, forcing our opponents to chase. The stage win was something unexpected, but it leaves me satisfied with my current form. Both Thomas and I have good conditions to win the race. This year the climb to Fóia was longer and less inclined and, therefore, the time trial will be even more decisive. Then we have Malhão on the last day. It’s a short climb, but in an effort of eight minutes you can suffer a lot” said Michal Kwiatkowski.
Since there are no time bonus to be credited, the top five of the general classification are all with the same time. The tiebreaker is made by the points awarded after each stage. Geraint Thomas is the new leader, followed by Jaime Rosón, Michal Kwiatkowski, Daniel Martin and Bauke Mollema.
“We are pleased to be leading again here on the Volta ao Algarve. We controlled our rivals well and in the final Kwiatkowski was the strongest. I’m happy for him. The yellow jersey was a surprise, but for now, it has little meaning. The time trial will be decisive and I’ll be happy if Team Sky keeps the yellow sweater tomorrow”says Thomas.
Before the peloton entered the spectacular final climb, the leaders of the day were Lukas Pöstlberger (Bora-Hansgrohe), Yves Lampaert (Quick-Step Floors), Benjamin King (Team Dimension Data), John Degenkolb (Trek-Segafredo), Marcos Jurado (Efapel), Oscar Pelegri (Radio Popular-Boavista) and Ricardo Mestre (W52-FC Porto). The break was made at kilometre 11, and the seven men had more than 7 minutes advantage.  Pöstlberger and King were the toughest, finishing their effort 9km from the finish, moments before the Team Sky attack.
Benjamin King (Team Dimension Data) is now the new mountains leader (blue jersey Liberty Seguros). Michal Kwiatkowski (Team SKY) is the leader of the points classification and Dutchman Sam Oomen (Team Sunweb) has stepped up his ranks in the youth classification, becoming the owner of the Aguas do Algarve White Jersey. Quick-Step Floors is the first in the team’s classification.
Third stage is a TT in Lagoa
The third stage, scheduled for Friday, will be decisive for the general classification. It will be an individual time-trial (20.3 kilometres).
1.ª Etapa/1st Stage: Sagres – Fóia, 187,9 km
1.º Michal Kwiatkowski (Team Sky), 4h49m51s (38,896 km/h)
2.º Bauke Mollema (Trek-Segafredo), mt
3.º Geraint Thomas (Team Sky), mt
4.º Daniel Martin (UAE Team Emirates), mt
5.º Jaime Rosón (Movistar Team), mt
6.º Patrick Konrad (Bora-hansgrohe), a 3s
7.º Bob Jungels (Quick-Step Floors), mt
8.º Pieter Serry (Quick-Step Floors), mt
9.º Vicente García de Mateos (Aviludo-Louletano-ULI), mt
10.º Richie Porte (BMC Racing Team), mt
Geral Individual/Overall
1.º Geraint Thomas (Team Sky), 9h37m49s
2.º Jaime Rosón (Movistar Team), mt
3.º Michal Kwiatkowski (Team Sky), mt
4.º Daniel Martin (UAE Team Emirates), mt
5.º Bauke Mollema (Trek-Segafredo), mt
6.º Patrick Konrad (Bora-hansgrohe), a 3s
7.º Bob Jungels (Quick-Step Floors), mt
8.º Pieter Serry (Quick-Step Floors), mt
9.º Vicente García de Mateos (Aviludo-Louletano-ULI), mt
10.º Louis Meintjes (Team Dimension Data), mt