In recent years, Stirling saw stage wins by Jay McCarthy (2016), Juan José Lobato (2015) and Diego Ulissi (2014). After a one year’s absence, the town in the Adelaide Hills returns as an arrival to the Tour Down Under.
Once the flag is dropped the road starts to slope slightly until the summit on North East Road Tea Tree Gully is reached at kilometre 12.8. This the only KOM climb of the day, although the official climb is limited to the last 2.5 kilometres. This section is averaging 6.3%.
At kilometer 72 the riders enter the circuit and at kilometre 85.3 they cross the line for the first time. Three laps left, 21.1 kilometres each. Every round begins with a rolling section and a drop into Mylor, after which two easy climbs follow in quick succession. The first one is 4.6 kilometres at 3% and after a short descent the next one is 2.4 kilometres at 3.8%. The passage on the line lies just before the top, so the actual finish is uphill.
Two intermediate sprints – at kilometre 45.8 and kilometre 77.3 – come with 3, 2 and 1 seconds each, while the first three riders one the line take time bonuses of 10, 6 and 4 seconds.
Tour Down Under 2018 stage 2: Route maps, height profiles, and more
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