Alejandro Valverde (Movistar) took victory on his first race look since being compelled to take day out with damage, driving very easily to the win on the opening degree of the Path d’Occitanie.
The sector champion took the full on the four-stage French race final yr, and beat Eddie Dunbar (Staff Ineos) to the road on degree probably the most 2019 version.
Valverde, who has been out with damage since forsaking Liège-Bastogne-Liège in April, regarded a degree above the remainder as he marked all of the strikes from the main crew at the ultimate climb of the primary degree.
The 175.5km opening day of the race within the French Pyrenees featured two ascents of the Côte de Aubignac with the end line on the best.
Due to the paintings of his Movistar squad, Valverde used to be left completely situated at the 4km ultimate climb in a discounted entrance crew of round 8 riders, which incorporated Iván Sosa and Eddie Dunbar (Staff Ineos), Rigoberto Urán (EF Schooling First) and Élie Gesbert (Arkéa-Samsic) amongst others.
Ag2r Los angeles Mondiale did a large number of paintings throughout the degree, however their final guy Tony Gallopin needed to struggle again to make it in to the entrance crew and wasn’t ready to contest the general dash.
After various assaults up the climb, all of which Valverde marked, it used to be Urán who went with just below 500m to head, adopted by way of Valverde and Dunbar.
The Spaniard used to be ready to come back round Urán within the ultimate 200m with Irishman Dunbar sticking to his wheel. There used to be not anything he may just do to overcome Valverde even though, who’s dash used to be robust sufficient to seal a victory on his go back to racing.
It’s the 39-year-old’s 124th occupation victory, and he now leads the race general. He’s the use of the race as his pre-Excursion de France warm-up, the place he’ll trip along Nairo Quintana and Mike Landa to check out and ship Movistar a protracted awaited general victory on the Excursion.
Los angeles Path d’Occitanie 2019, degree one: Gignac – Vallée de l’Hérault to Saint-Geniez-d’Olt-et-d’Aubrac (175.5km)
1. Alejandro Valverde (Esp) Movistar, in 4-44-00
2. Eddie Dunbar (Irl) Staff Ineos, at identical time
3. Élie Gesbert (Fra) Arkéa-Samsic, at 2s
4. Rigoberto Urán (Col) EF Schooling First
5. Tony Gallopin (Fra) Ag2r Los angeles Mondiale
6. Iván Sosa (Col) Staff Ineos, all at identical time
7. Rein Taaramäe (Est) General Direct Energie, at 8s
8. Giovanni Carboni (Ita) Bardiani-CSF, at 10s
9. Pavel Sivakov (Rus) Staff Ineos, at 35s
10. Nans Peters (Fra) Ag2r Los angeles Mondiale, at identical time
Common classification after degree one
1. Alejandro Valverde (Esp) Movistar