The only thing better than winning is winning on your birthday, and that’s exactly what Matteo Trentin did on stage 2 of Vuelta a Burgos, which put on the table one of the few opportunities for sprinters to vie for victory at this year’s edition. Matteo, who came at the start of the Spanish race two days after animating the RideLondon Classic, became the 13th different Quick-Step to score a win this season, as he took the team’s 2017 tally to 41 successes.

Quick-Step Floors did the bulk of the work during the 153km-long stage, controlling the seven-man breakaway which went clear moments after the start, keeping it on a leash and reeling it in inside the final 15 kilometers, before shutting down an attack of Gianni Moscon (Team Sky), who tried to foil the sprinters’ plans with four kilometers remaining.

In the finale, while all the other riders were crammed on the right side of the road, Matteo Trentin – who was guided by teammate Julian Alaphilippe – decided to go on the left and launched a fierce acceleration at the 300 meters-to-go mark, which carried him all the way to the line, where he punched the air as he enjoyed his maiden victory of the year.

“The guys did a really good job, helping me stay in position and be in front of the bunch with three kilometers to go. Having only two stages for the sprinters meant everybody wanted to be up there and that led to some crazy speeds in the closing meters. I went with 300 meters to go, because in this kind of sprints it’s always better to start earlier and I knew I could keep the speed up all the way to the line. Now it’s time for a nice celebration at the hotel, with a glass of wine and a nice steak”, a happy Matteo said after his winning sprint in Belorado.

Julian Alaphilippe – third in the overall classification – and Enric Mas, best young rider of the race, finished the stage safely tucked in the bunch and will now gear up for the first mountain test of the 39th edition, Picon Blanco, a 8.5km climb which averages 9.1%, never used before in the Vuelta a Burgos.