Tour de Suisse 2024: Bryan Coquard benefits from Arnaud De Lie mechanical to take stage 2 win from reduced bunch sprint

Bryan Coquard has powered to victory on stage 2 of the 2024 Tour de Suisse, benefitting from misfortune for Arnaud De Lie in a thrilling sprint finale.

Five riders got themselves into the breakaway of the day. Among them were Gerben Kuypers (Intermarché - Wanty), a pair of Team Corratec - Vini Fantini riders and a duo of riders from the Swiss National Team. Despite the fact they managed to build their advantage over four and a half minutes however, the fact this was the only 'sprint' opportunity of this year's race meant their hopes of victory were unlikely.

Heading into the final 50 kilometres, the time gap had already been cut to under three minutes and by the time the leaders, now down to just four, were entering the last 30 kilometres of the day, the difference had been cut even more with just 1:40 separating the two groups.

On a punchy rise, just over 20 kilometres out, Mark Cavendish was spotted dropping out the back of the peloton, but on the descent after, the Astana Qazaqstan Team sprinter managed to work his way back to the bunch. With one more climb before the final sprint however, the Manx Missile looked like he have a fight on his hands to still be there and contesting things.

From the breakaway, Luca Jenni of the Swiss team proved the strongest and with around 13 kilometres to go, the Swiss attacked his companions on the final little rise. With just over 10 kilometres to go however, Jenni was caught and the breakaway of the day had been brought to an end by the Alpecin-Deceuninck controlled peloton.

So fierce was the pace being set by Alpecin-Deceuninck on the climb that splits were happening in the peloton, with the Maillot Jaune of Yves Lampaert being a notable absentee from the front of the race. On the descent things were starting to come back together at the back of the lead group. The attacks at the front were continuing though with the likes of Soren Kragh Andersen, Mauro Schmid and Alberto Bettiol all attempting moves.

It was the Italian, Bettiol whose attack offered most danger and with 2 kilometres to go, the EF Education - EasyPost man was around 10 seconds ahead of the peloton. As he began to tie up though, Bettiol's dangerous move was caught as the race went through the Flamme Rouge. Then, it was all about the sprint and in the battle for the line, Bryan Coquard opened things up and although Arnaud De Lie was perfectly positioned on the Frenchman's wheel, an untimely mechanical saw the Cofidis sprinter power to victory ahead of Michael Matthews.

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