Australian rider sprints to Stage 2 win in Tour of Qinghai Lake

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The Delko-Marseille Provence KTM rider entered the race as one of a handful of sprint favourites and proved his credentials with a solid kick to the line after completing eight laps over the 115-kilometre Xining city circuit.

"I saw [in yesterday's race report] that I was maybe napping and that was probably true. I was a bit sleepy and everybody was watching what I did yesterday," he added.

"I've got the first victory," explained the new race and points leader. "The pressure is off the shoulders for both me and the team, and now we can concentrate on the next couple of days and finish off this tour strong," he said.

"The difference in today's final is that I used my awareness and my senses a lot more today than I did yesterday," said Jones after taking the win over Briton Jacob Hennessy from the Mitchelton-BikeExchange cycling team and Luca Acini from Wilier Triestina-Selle Italia.

Jones cut a relaxed figure following the win. "Today there were a lot more guys, the road was much faster in the finish and it wasn't as hard during the stage," he said.

With 11 stages remaining, including seven possible sprint opportunities following four straight climbing stages, Jones is confident of a more positive performance.

"It was quite an easy stage and we did a fantastic lead out in the finish. We didn't have it all our way, but I was able to find my way and come home really strongly. I'm feeling good, got a good sprint and have a great team."

Jones, 26, who finished fourth on the Tour of Qinghai Lake opener, was determined not to "get caught napping" on the second stage competition.

XINING, July 23 (Xinhua) -- Australian sprinter Brenton Jones powered home with a sensational performance on a rain-soaked circuit to win the second stage of the Tour of Qinghai Lake on Monday.

Florian miscalculated the laps and raised his arms in celebration after completing seven laps. He looked bewildered as nobody responded to his celebration and other riders kept chasing him after crossing the line. He grimaced and rode on, but could not keep the pace and was left behind in a mass finish led by Jones.

A three-rider break, including Arman Kamyshev (Vino-Astana Motors) of Kazakhstan, Hudry Florian (Interpro Stradalli) of France and 'Best Asian Rider' Li Zisen (Qinghai Tianyoude) of China, launched on the first circuit and maintained a narrow gap before being caught by the peloton at the ringing of the bell lap.