Sam Welsford took his first professional win and gave Team DSM their first win of the 2022 season on stage 5 of the Tour of Turkey in Ayvalik.
The 26-year-old Australian switched from the track to road racing after the Tokyo Olympics and used his track speed to pass Jasper Philipsen while sat in the saddle in the final 100 metres.
Both had surged passed Caleb Ewan (Lotto Soudal) who started his sprint early along the barriers. When Ewan was passed, he eased up, while behind Sam Bennett (Bora-Hansgrohe) lost his chain and his pedal and was also unable to sprint.
A crash inside the final kilometre saw several riders go down. However Tour of Turkey stage 4 winner Eduardo Sepúlveda (Drone Hopper-Androni Giocattoli) kept the turquoise leader’s jersey.
Welsford had shown his spring form by finishing third at Scheldeprijs and fourth at the Bredene Koksijde Classic.
“This is my first pro victory in my first season in the pro peloton and I’ve really been enjoying it so far,” Welsford said.
“Team DSM have been really hungry to win and we’ve been going step by step. The win today has been coming, so really happy for the team and for myself.
“I knew it was pretty close coming into the last 150 metres. I was actually quite far back and so I followed Philipsen through a gap and it opened up in the middle after a lot of guys went quite early. I just saw the line, put my head down and I couldn’t believe when I crossed the line first.”
The stage saw Feritcan Samli (Spor Toto) and Michiel Stockman (Saris Rouvy) spend a long time out front, with Pat Bevin of Israel-Premier Tech taking a one-second time bonus at an intermediate sprint to close to 13 seconds on Sepúlveda.
Israel-Premier Tech, Alpecin-Fenix and Human Powered Health then split the peloton in crosswinds but the peloton came back together with 50km to go. Another attack was allowed to go clear, with Maurice Ballerstedt (Alpecin-Fenix) the last survivor before the sprint team took over and prepare for the sprint.
BikeExchange-Jayco, Israel PremierTech and Bora-Hansgrohe were all present up front but Welsford took the glory to end Team DSM’s lack of success.
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