SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) Marcel Kittel took advantage of a textbook lead-out from his Quick-Step Floors teammates to hold off Peter Sagan and Elia Viviani and win the opening stage of the Tour of California on Sunday.
The German sprinter spent the 104-mile stage that began and ended in downtown Sacramento tucked safely in the peloton. And when the field brought back a four-man breakaway with about 15 miles to the finish, Kittel knew he would have a chance for his eighth win of the season.
Team Sky went to the front on the first of three 2.2-mile circuits, but it was Quick-Step that made the decisive move on the final lap with Fabio Sabatini launching Kittel to the finish line.
The second stage Monday takes riders 90 miles from Modesto to San Jose.