Tour of Turkey: Jasper Philipsen wins opening stage sprint in Antalya

ARDOOIE BELGIUM AUGUST 23 Jasper Philipsen of Belgium and Team AlpecinDeceuninck celebrates at finish line as stage winner during the 19th Renewi Tour 2023 Stage 1 a 1829km stage from Blankenberge to Ardooie on August 23 2023 in Ardooie Belgium Photo by Bas CzerwinskiGetty Images
Jasper Philipsen took his 16th win of the 2023 season on stage 1 of the Tour of Turkey (Image credit: Bas Czerwinski/Getty Images)

Jasper Philipsen (Alpecin-Deceuninck) won the opening sprint stage at the 2023 Tour of Turkey, outkicking Gleb Syritsa (Astana Qazaqstan) to the line in Antalya after a solid leadout from Ramon Sinkeldam.

Alpecin-Deceuninck stayed off the front for much of the straight run-in, staying behind Bora-Hansgrohe until the 2.5km to go point where they began to show themselves and take control alongside Astana Qazaqstan.

Under the flamme rouge, the best sprinting squad in the world showed their credentials, arriving with three riders remaining in the final kilometre, allowing Philipsen to start his sprint and glance to his left seemingly looking for anyone to try and challenge him. 

Timothy Dupont (Tarteletto-Isorex) completed a Belgian 1-3 as he closed quickly in the final few hundred metres, but neither he nor Syritsa were even close to getting onto Philipsen’s wheel, let alone sprinting past the best sprinter in the world. 

This was Philipsen’s 16th win of the 2023 season, moving back within one win of catching Tadej Pogačar’s haul, and the Belgian should have the opportunity to overtake his good friend and former teammate during the racing here in Turkey. 

Mark Cavendish (Astana Qazaqstan) didn’t sprint for his own ambitions in what is his first race back from his race-ending crash at the Tour de France, and was instead on duty for Syritsa, getting some racing in the legs ahead of 2024 after announcing that he wouldn’t retire as originally planned. 

A seven-rider breakaway had been up the road for much of the day’s racing with Róbigzon Leandro Oyola (Team Medellín-EPM), Doğukan Arikan, Serdar Anıl Depe (Spor Toto Cycling Team), Mateusz Kostański (Voster ATS Team), Alex Vandenbulcke (Tarteletto - Isorex), Tobias Nolde (P&S Benotti) and Bram Dissel (BEAT Cycling Club) fighting it out on the 175km flat route for KOM points and the intermediate sprints. 

Tomorrow’s stage is on a hillier route from Kemer to Kalkan with a category 2 climb, that could split the GC riders from the fast men, coming 93km into the 167km stage. It may be too far from the finish, however with the 37km downhill and flat run-into the Kalkan, the sprinters could make it back on to fight for victory. 


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