Ireland’s Sam Bennett won on his Deceuninck-Quick-Step debut to take the first stage of the Tour Down Under.
Bennett, who signed a two-year deal with the Belgian team last month, held off Jasper Philipsen (UAE Team Emirates) and Erik Baska (Bora-Hansgrohe) in a close race to the line.
The 29-year-old takes a four-second advantage over Belgium’s Philipsen into the next stage.
“It was definitely the work of the team that earned the win today,” said Bennett.
“I’d be lying if I said I didn’t feel the pressure coming to Deceuninck-Quick-Step and trying to get that first win.
“The guys did an absolutely fantastic job, kept me in a great position, and then executed the lead-out perfectly. Every one of them played a superb role today.”
The British duo of Chris Lawless and Simon Yates finished 12th and 26th respectively.