Jumbo-Visma powered to team time trial victory on stage one of the Vuelta a España, comprehensively beating the 22 other squads to take the first red jersey of the race.
The Dutch squad, racing on home roads in Utrecht, put 13 seconds into Ineos Grenadiers in second, and 14 seconds into Quick-Step Alpha Vinyl. Their time of 24-40.29 meant they raced the route at an average speed of 56.665km/h
At no point did the team look in trouble, and they finished with all eight riders, despite only needing five in the front to post a time.
Robert Gesink crossed the line in first, ahead of defending champion Primož Roglič, meaning he goes into the first red jersey of the race.
BikeExchange-Jayco were the early favourites, but as conditions dried out and other powerhouse squads hit the road, they ended up in fourth.
The only general classification contenders to suffer any kind of blow were those of EF Education-EasyPost, who ended up conceding 1-19 to Jumbo-Visma.
How it happened
It was a drizzly start to the Vuelta a España in Utrecht on Friday, as the 23 teams took to the roads of the Dutch city for the stage one team time trial.
Burgos-BH were the first to start, already a man down as Manuel Peñalver was forced to withdraw before the race had even begun. They set a time of 26-38.38, meaning they travelled around the 23.3km course at 52.478 km/h.
It was not a long time for the Spanish ProTour team in the hot seat, however, as the second team to set off, Intermarché-Wanty-Gobert, beat their time by half a minute.
The first serious contenders to roll off the extended start ramp were BikeExchange-Jayco, the Australian squad riding in support of Simon Yates’ tilt at the red jersey.
Meanwhile, Israel-Premier Tech and then Groupama-FDJ both went fastest at the finish, with the latter finishing in 25-18.88.
However, BikeExchange proved that their favourites tag was deserved, as they set a new fastest time, 25-11.24, which meant they rode at an average speed of 55.504km/h. They were just seven seconds ahead of Groupama at the end, but this could have proved crucial.
By the time other favourites, such as Ineos Grenadiers and Bora-Hansgrohe had set off, the road had dried up considerably, which might have meant a faster time. Bora came close to BikeExchange’s time, coming in ten seconds down.
It would be UAE Team Emirates who next came close to challenging the BikeExchange supremacy, with the squad missing out on the hot seats by just a couple of seconds.
While this was happening, Ineos Grenadiers crossed the intermediate point quickest, five seconds ahead of the previous best set by Bora; this was quickly beaten by Quick-Step Alpha Vinyl, however, another of the favourites for the day.
Jumbo-Visma bested this time at the first checkpoint once again, powering through 14 seconds quicker than the previous best effort.
BikeExchange’s long time in the hot seat was ended by Ineos, as the British squad beat their Australian rivals by 18 seconds at the line, with an almost full complement of seven riders crossing the finish together. Their average pace was above 56km/h, such was their speed on the flat course.
Behind them, Quick-Step finished second behind Ineos, incredibly narrowly, finishing less than a second behind their rivals.
Movistar went out fast, possibly too fast, as they ended up 30 seconds behind Ineos, and lost three riders along the way.
This left Jumbo-Visma as the only team still out on the course, and as they came towards the line it was clear that the Dutch team, riding on home roads, was going to do something special. They went a whole 13 seconds quicker than Ineos, with Robert Gesink crossing the line in first and therefore topping the general classification.
Vuelta a España 2022: Stage one results
1. Jumbo-Visma, in 24-40
2. Ineos Grenadiers, at 13s
3. Quick-Step Alpha Vinyl, at 14s
4. BikeExchange-Jayco, at 31s
5. UAE Team Emirates, at 33s
6. Groupama-FDJ, at 38s
7. Bora-Hansgrohe, at 41s
8. Trek-Segafredo, at 42s
9. Bahrain-Victorious, at 42s
10. Movistar, at 43s
General classification after stage one
1. Robert Gesink (Ned) Jumbo-Visma, in 24-40
2. Primož Roglič (Slo) Jumbo-Visma
3. Chris Harper (Aus) Jumbo-Visma
4. Sepp Kuss (USA) Jumbo-Visma
5. Rohan Dennis (Aus) Jumbo-Visma
6. Edoardo Affini (Ita) Jumbo-Visma
7. Sam Oomen (Ned) Jumbo-Visma
8. Mike Teunissen (Ned) Jumbo-Visma, all at same time
9. Ethan Hayter (GBr) Ineos Grenadiers, at 13s
10. Richard Carapaz (Ecu) Ineos Grenadiers, at same time