Israel Start-Up Nation showed great team spirit on the opening stage of Arctic Race of Norway, making sure to keep Ben Hermans near the front and in the fight for the GC.

Early on the stage, a small group of riders got away. Determined not to give the escapees any chances, the ISN guys contributed to the chase, keeping the breakaway in check. Guy Sagiv put on an impressive performance in the stunning scenery setting the pace in the pack.

On the final lap in Tromsø, it all came back together again, leaving the pre-race favorites to fight for the stage win. Hermans did well to stay in contention, finishing in the group of GC riders just two seconds after the lone winner.

Ben Hermans: “The break was strong so we put Guy [Sagiv] on the front to help close them down together with B&B. Guy did a superb job today. The race was pretty controlled on the last climb and I survived well to finish in the same time as the main group. I’m happy to get through this rainy day and sketchy circuit. Now, I’ll focus on the uphill finish on stage 3.”