Tour de Romandie: Ethan Vernon wins stage one as Mark Cavendish and Simon Yates withdraw

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British cyclist Ethan Vernon punches the air in celebration after winning stage one of the Tour de Romandie
Ethan Vernon turned professional in 2021

Britain’s Ethan Vernon won stage one of the Tour de Romandie after Mark Cavendish and Simon Yates both abandoned the race because of illness.

Soudal Quick-Step rider Vernon, 22, sprinted to victory from a reduced peloton in Vallee de Joux, Switzerland, to also claim the race lead.

Jayco-Alula rider Yates, who was a contender for the overall title, withdrew because of stomach issues.

Astana sprinter Cavendish pulled out with 60km to go after feeling unwell.

He had been distanced with most of the other pure sprinters in the race after an early attack led by the Ineos Grenadiers team.

It was Vernon’s second victory at World Tour level after winning stage five of the Volta a Catalunya last year.

He takes over the leader’s yellow jersey from team-mate Josef Cerny, who won Tuesday’s prologue – a 6.8km individual time trial.

“It’s really special,” said Vernon, who was part of Britain’s winning team pursuit quartet at the 2022 Track Cycling World Championships.

“I obviously have taken the jersey off my team-mate, so we keep it in the team for another day and we keep trying for the general classification with the team.

“I’m not sure if I can keep it. Tomorrow is hard, but anything is possible. I had good legs today, so we’ll see what the legs are like tomorrow. If not me, we have other cards we can play in the team.”

Stage two is an undulating 162.7km route from Morteau to La Chaux-de-Fonds.

The race concludes on Sunday.

Stage one result

  1. Ethan Vernon (GB/Soudal Quick-Step) 4hrs 05mins 34secs
  2. Thibau Nys (Bel/Trek-Segafredo) Same time
  3. Milan Menten (Bel/Lotto-Dstny)
  4. Romain Bardet (Fra/Team DSM)
  5. Jacopo Mosca (Ita/Trek-Segafredo)

General classification after stage one

  1. Ethan Vernon (GB/Soudal Quick-Step) 4hrs 12mins 59secs
  2. Josef Cerny (Cze/Soudal Quick-Step) Same time
  3. Tobias Foss (Nor/Team Jumbo-Visma) +1sec
  4. Remi Cavagna (Fra/Soudal Quick-Step) Same time
  5. Nico Denz (Ger/Bora-Hansgrohe) +4secs


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