Alex Aranburu attacks to win Stage 2 of the Itzulia Basque Country
Primoz Roglic retains race lead as Maximilian Schachmann takes the mountains jersey
Today’s second stage offered plenty of terrain for attacks, with its 154.8 km from Zalla to Sestao featuring two 3rd category climbs and one 2nd category climb, and the finale also ascending steeply up towards the finish.
BORA-hansgrohe had some really bad luck today, with crashes of Patrick Konrad, Wilco Kelderman and Cesare Benedetti, who were, however able to get back on their bikes and regain contact with the peloton.
The eventual catch of the day's break led to a series of moves from the reduced field.
Maximilian Schachmann launched a counter-attack, initially only Primoz Roglic who was able to follow him, with two other riders eventually catching up to the duo. Yet the group was later caught.
With 10 km to go, Alex Aranburu launched an attack, and no one behind responded opening up a gap that couldn't be closed.
Maximilian Schachmann took the mountains jersey and now lies in 6th place, 31 seconds behind the current leader P. Roglic, in the overall classification.
Wednesday's third 167km stage is another day in the Pais Vasco hills.
The stage starts in Amurrio and after a long loop south, ends in nearby Ermualde, with a steep 3km climb up to the finish. Some sectors of the climb are at 15%!
VIDEO: 2021 Itzulia Basque Country Stage 2 Highlights
2021 Itzulia Basque Country Stage 2 Top 10
1 Alex Aranburu Deba (Spa) Astana-Premier Tech 3:45:32
2 Omar Fraile Matarranz (Spa) Astana-Premier Tech 0:00:15
3 Tadej Pogacar (Slo) UAE Team Emirates
4 David Gaudu (Fra) Groupama-FDJ
5 Michael Woods (Can) Israel Start-up Nation
6 Primoz Roglic (Slo) Jumbo-Visma
7 Maximillian Schachmann (Ger) Bora-Hansgrohe
8 Mikel Landa Meana (Spa) Bahrain Victorious
9 Sergio Higuita Garcia (Col) EF Education-Nippo
10 Alejandro Valverde (Spa) Movistar Team
2021 Itzulia Basque Country GC after Stage 2
1 Primoz Roglic (Slo) Jumbo-Visma 4:03:04
2 Alex Aranburu Deba (Spa) Astana-Premier Tech 0:00:05
3 Brandon McNulty (USA) UAE Team Emirates 0:00:06
4 Tadej Pogacar (Slo) UAE Team Emirates 0:00:24
5 Adam Yates (GBr) Ineos Grenadiers 0:00:28
6 Maximillian Schachmann (Ger) Bora-Hansgrohe 0:00:31
7 Jonas Vingegaard (Den) Jumbo-Visma 0:00:32
8 Omar Fraile Matarranz (Spa) Astana-Premier Tech 0:00:34
9 Wilco Kelderman (Ned) Bora-Hansgrohe 0:00:40
10 Pello Bilbao Lopez De Armentia (Spa) Bahrain Victorious 0:00:42