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Canada’s Gee up to 13th in Tour Down Under as Rohan takes lead

GC favourites lock horns on hilly course

Photo by: Sirotti

Rohan Dennis leaped into the lead of the 2023 Santos Tour Down Under with a win on Thursday’s second stage, ripping the ochre jersey from prologue victor Alberto Bettiol. Derek Gee, the lone Canadian in the race, jumped up to 13th from 19th on GC by coming in with a pack 11 seconds after Dennis crossed the line.

The Course

The riders had 154 km to ride over hilly terrain, with two categorized climbs. Cat. 2 Parawa Hill was in the middle of the course, and Cat. 1 Nettle Hill, two tough kilometres of 7.8 percent, crested 21 km from the line, with an uncategorized climb proceding the Victor Harbor finish.

Crosswinds ruffled the peloton into echlons in the early part of the course, and with UAE-Emirates pulling, there was a split in the field. This rip was sewn up before Parawa Hill, where a lone Astana rider toodled off for 16 km outing until Jumbo-Visma called him home.

Ineos drove towards Nettle Hill, where UAE’s new chap Jay Vine made a dig that created a high-powered quintet containing Dennis, Giro d’Italia champion Jai Hindley and Simon Yates. Hindley attacked at the red kite, Dennis countered and took the win by two seconds.

Gee and Sebastian Berwick chased hard in the 52-rider group behind to bring their Kiwi Israel-Premier Tech teammate Corbin Strong up to fifth on GC.

Friday’s short third stage features the same climb that determined the Women’s Tour Down Under, Corkscrew Hill, cresting 6 km from the finish.

2023 Tour Down Under Stage 2
1) Rohan Dennis (Australia/Jumbo-Visma) 4:00:20
2) Jay Vine (Australia/UAE-Emirates) +0:02
3) Mauro Schmid (Switzerland/Soudal-Quick Step) s.t.
57) Derek Gee (Canada/Israel-Premier Tech) +0:11

2023 Tour Down Under GC
1) Rohan Dennis (Australia/Jumbo-Visma) 7:44:41
2) Jay Vine (Australia/UAE-Emirates) +0:03
3) Magnus Sheffield (USA/Ineos) +0:12
13) Derek Gee (Canada/Israel-Premier Tech) +0:22