Nacer Bouhanni edges Ben Swift to win opening stage of Tour of Catalunya
Team Sky rider Ben Swift was forced to settle for second once again as the Volta a Catalunya got underway on Monday, as Cofidis rider Nacer Bouhanni clamed the opening stage.
Bouhanni, who had already accrued stage wins in Paris-Nice and the Vuleta a Andulucia in 2016, launched himself off Swift's back wheel to claim victory in a sprint finish to the 176 kilometre stage to and from Calella - forcing Swift to settle for second again after his narrow defeat at Milan-San Remo.
Daryl Impey of Orica-GreenEdge finished third, after the peloton had reeled in the last of the stage's breakaway riders over the final climb of the day.
Volta a Catalunya, stage 1 results
1. Nacer Bouhanni (Fra) Cofidis, Solutions Credits 4:28:51
2. Ben Swift (GBr) Team Sky
3. Daryl Impey (RSA) Orica-GreenEdge
4. Enrico Gasparotto (Ita) Wanty - Groupe Gobert
5. Aleksei Tsatevich (Rus) Team Katusha
General classification after stage 1
1. Nacer Bouhanni (Fra) Cofidis, Solutions Credits 4:28:41
2. Ben Swift (GBr) Team Sky +0:00:04
3. Daryl Impey (RSA) Orica-GreenEdge +0:00:06
4. Cameron Meyer (Aus) Dimension Data +0:00:09
5. Enrico Gasparotto (Ita) Wanty - Groupe Gobert +0:00:10