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Dublin: 11 °C Tuesday 15 October, 2019

Ireland's leading man Sam Bennett goes from strength to strength in Turkey with opening stage victory

Bennett secured his fifth win of 2019 with a sprint finish during the 156.7km stage from Istanbul to Tekirdag.

The 28-year-old sprinter has enjoyed an impressive start to 2019.
The 28-year-old sprinter has enjoyed an impressive start to 2019.
Image: Imago/PA Images

A BRILLIANTLY CONSISTENT start to the 2019 season continued for Irish cyclist Sam Bennett on Tuesday afternoon, as the 28-year-old secured the opening stage at the Tour of Turkey.

Already this year the Belgian-born sprinter has won the final stage at the Vuelta a San Juan in Argentina, the final stage of the inaugural UAE Tour and another two stage wins at Paris-Nice last month too.

Today he finished ahead of the Netherlands’ Fabio Jakobsen (Deceuninck Quick-Step) and Australia’s Caleb Ewan (Lotta Soudal) with a time of 3:32:34 to secure first on the podium and place himself in the overall lead.

Bennett recently took a 24-day break from cycling after the recent Milan-San Remo Classic, but has returned in fine form to pick up where he left off.

“The boys did a super job, I give them a lot of credit today,” he told the Irish Times. “After my break, I don’t really have the same condition, but I know as a sprinter you still have to get the results.

“But without the guys today, it would have been very difficult. So I definitely want to thank them for that.

“I saw QuickStep coming at the last moment. I had to try to get that wheel. It was very difficult because he is a really quick guy. I am really happy to get that.”

Last year Bennett, who grew up in Carrick-on-Suir, won an incredible three stage wins at the Giro d’Italia — as a result becoming the first Irish cyclist since Sean Kelly at the 1988 Vuelta a Espana to secure multiple stage wins at a Grand Tour.

Tuesday’s stage win is his fifth already in 2019, with the Bora–Hansgrohe rider going from strength to strength after enjoying his most prolific season in cycling to date last year.

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About the author:

Aaron Gallagher

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