Quick-Step Floors enjoy solid start in Hammer Stavanger
James Knox shined for the team on the first stage of the second-ever Hammer Series event.
As expected, Hammer Series produced some great action from day one, which consisted of ten laps of a tough circuit in Sandness, which featured two hard climb – 800 meters at 6.8% and 1000 meters at 5.8% – with the first ten men across the line at the end of each lap being awarded points.
The Quick-Step Floors riders were prominent from the start, thanks to neo-pro Kasper Asgreen, who made it into a group which broke clear early on and bagged in the first points of the team. Following an injection of pace from behind, the group was swallowed on lap three and the race came back together, but only for a brief time, as the attacking continued, two Quick-Step Floors men jumping from the field on the first climb: same Asgreen and fellow neo-pro James Knox.
Knox, who has recently returned to action after a four-week break, showcased his talent every time the road went up, surging ahead from the elite group and scoring valuable points for the team as the race was slowly turning into a battle of attrition. Several times, the 22-year-old Cumbrian even tried to catch his opponents by surprise with a few long-range attacks, and even though those moves didn't stick, he continued his resolute display and stayed with the best, adding more points to Quick-Step Floors' haul.
With a total of 441 amassed over the ten laps of the 80.6km-long race, Quick-Step Floors slotted into fifth place overall at the end of this electrifying day and will now turn the attention to the second race scheduled in Norway, the Hammer Sprint.
Photo credit: ©Luc Claessen/ Getty Images