The German sprinter avoids a near-crash in the last corner, sprinting to sixth place while being out of position.

Israel Start-Up Nation’s Andre Greipel was particularly looking forward to the start of the Tour of Turkey. He is the rider with the most stage wins ever (11) and particularly eager to grow that number in his eighth participation in Turkey.

ISN brought a strong team to support the German sprinter with his ambitions, by sending the full sprint train (Sagiv, Dowsett, Brändle, Cimolai, and Zabel) to Turkey.

Greipel’s teammates helped him as much as they could in stage 1, bringing him in to a promising position towards the final kilometres.

In the hectic finale, Greipel just avoided a crash in the last corner. Out of position, he had to launch his sprint and ultimately settle for sixth place.

A stage win was ISN’s stated goal in the Tour of Turkey. That remains unchanged after the opening stage and there are plenty of opportunities for the sprint train to succeed, starting again tomorrow with another flat stage.

Due to heavy snow, the opening stage of the Tour of Turkey was both moved to Konya and shortened to 73 kilometres. Despite the freezing cold, the dry roads made it possible to do the race.

Photos: VeloImages