Cycling - Kristoff wins second Oman stage as Howard takes lead

Alexander Kristoff (Katusha) won the second stage of the Tour of Oman as Leigh Howard (Orica-GreenEdge) took the overall lead of the race.

Cycling - Kristoff wins second Oman stage as Howard takes lead

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Katusha's Alexander Kristoff of Norway celebrates after winning the 130km (81 miles) stage two of the Tour of Oman (Reuters)

Kristoff picked up his first victory of 2014 by winning a sprint finish after a 139km trek from Al Bustan to Quriyat ahead of Howard and Tom Boonen (Quick-Step Cycling Team) who was third.

With the peloton racing into a strong head wind, Kirstoff attacked early to avoid problems in the lead out and it paid dividends as he won by nearly a bike length.

Howard's second successive second placed finish meant that he picked up more bonus seconds and he holds a two second advantage in GC ahead of Kirstoff, stage one winner Andre Griepel (Lotto Belisol ) and Preben Van Hecke ( Topsport Vlaanderen – Baloise)

Defending champion and Tour de France winner Chris Froome finished safely in the peloton and is 12 seconds down in GC.

The riders observed a moment's silence before the start of the stage in memory of Belgian rider Kristof Goddaert, who died on Tuesday in a training accident.

Stage two result

1 Alexander Kristoff (NOR) Katusha, 3:12:01

2 Leigh Howard (AUS) Orica-GreenEdge, same time

3 Tom Boonen (BEL) Omega Pharma - Quick-Step, same time

4 Robert Forster (GER) UnitedHealthcare, same time

5 Nacer Bouhanni (FRA) FDJ, same time

General classification

1 Leigh Howard (AUS) Orica-GreenEdge, 7:15:20

2 Alexander Kristoff (NOR) Katusha, +2secs

3 Andre Greipel (GER) Lotto Belisol, same time

4 Preben van Hecke (BEL) Topsport Vlaanderen-Baloise, same time

5 Tom Boonen (BEL) Omega Pharma - Quick-Step, +8

6 Nicola Ruffoni (ITA) Bardiani-CSF, same time

7 Paolo Colonna (ITA) Bardiani-CSF, same time

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