Tour of Qatar 2008 – Stage 2 – Christian Knees with gutsy performance

Dortmund, 28 January 2008. Two flat tires ended Team MILRAM’s hopes of a success in the second stage of the Tour of Qatar (UCI 2.1). Alberto Ongarato and Marco Velo were both in promising position in the 137,5 km flat stage when the defects kept them from staying with the leaders.
The day’s winner, and new wearer of the golden leader’s jersey was Belgian sprint star Tom Boonen (Quick-Step). His landsman Greg van Avermaet (Silence-Lotto) and Italian Danilo Napolitano finished behind him in second and third.

German all-rounder Christian Knees put in a gutsy performance and ended the stage in 22d place as best MILRAM rider. “That was a really hard stage today,” Knees said. “After Alberto and Marco fell back, I was by myself in the chase group. We kept on trying to make up the 30 second difference to the leaders. But with the wind today that required too much strength, which didn’t pay off in the end.”

At the second stage of the Tour of Qatar, the speed was very high from the beginning, so that the peloton broke apart after five km. The escape group around Tom Boonen used an average speed of about 56 mph to keep from being caught and was able to hold on to its advantage until the final sprint, which the Belgian won.

The Stages 2008:

27.01. Stage 1: Doha – Doha, ITT (6 km)

28.01. Stage 2: Al Zubarah – Doha Golf Club (137,5 km)

29.01. Stage 3: Camel Race Track – Qatar Foundation (147,5 km)

30.01. Stage 4: Khalifa Stadium – Al Khor Corniche (131,5 km)

31.01. Stage 5: Al Khor Academy – Al Khor Corniche (170 km)

01.02. Stage 6: Al Wakra – Doha Corniche (120 km)

Total length: 712,5 km

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