On a day with non-stop action, it was Owain Doull (GB National Team) that slipped into the yellow tunic to take over the lead at Triptyque des Monts et Chateaux after two split stages shook up the GC. Doull, who was in the breakaway on stage one, placed 2nd in the morning time trial and then 7th in the afternoon road race.
The time trial in the morning was taken out by GB National's Jon Dibben. Dibben, who splits his time between the road and the track, laid down a stout effort on the technical 10 kilometer course with a time of 12'42", which was 2 seconds better than his teammate Doull, 7 seconds on Alex Kirsch (Leopard) and 8 seconds on Kristian Haugaard (Giant-Shimano). Frederik Ludvigsson was experiencing a problem with one of his legs in the final kilometers of the time trial and ended coming in down 13 seconds.
Dibben took the overall lead heading into the final stage on nearly the exact same time as Doull with Haugaard 4 seconds back. It was on for the afternoon stage.
From the beginning, there were attacks being launched left and right but for the first half of the stage, nothing was getting a significant lead. Riders would attack up a hill and grab some KOM points but then they would not have the power to keep it going on the descent and on the flats. With 25 kilometers to go, Walt De Winter (Verandas Willems) launched an attack with Tim Vanspeybroeck (3M) and Antoine Demoitie (Wallonie Bruxelles). De Winter was riding like a man possessed; driving the breakaway along with some fury. Going over the Mont de l'Enclus, De Winter attacked his break mates and after a few kilometers, he was joined by ex-cyclocrosser Floris De Tier (EFC-OPQS) and the pair made it over the Cote du Horlitin before being joined by a select group including Patrick Konrad (Gourmetfein).
With just 6 kilometers left, the remnants of the peloton came back together for the mad dash to the line. In the uphill finish, the peloton (or what was left of it) blew up and a select group of 11 were left on the top of the climb. In the kick up to the finish, it was Patrick Konrad who emerged of stage 1's runner up Tiesj Benoot (Lotto-Belisol) and the ox-strong Walt De Winter. Owain Doull was able to hold onto the front group and took over the yellow jersey from his teammate Dibben. There were some losers on the day including Kristian Haugaard and Mike Teunissen, who both came in at 13 seconds down and would need some divine intervention to come away with a GC victory.
Doull starts tomorrow with a 7 second lead on Luxembourger Kirsch and 11 seconds on Konrad with Benoot, Ludvigsson and Rob Leemans (Lotto-Belisol U23) just behind them. There will be multiple intermediate sprints on tap tomorrow along with the bonus seconds at the finish. Doull has been strong through 2 days and will be hard to overcome tomorrow and he looks to be in fine form for the upcoming Nations Cups.