Meyer, the 25-year-old Orica-GreenEdge rider, who enjoyed a stellar track career before switching to the professional ranks, acknowledged he had been fortunate.
“Obviously, I had some help with the weather as the wind was favorable for me, being one of the first riders off,” the former six-time track world champion said.
Last year’s winner Rui Costa of Portugal finished 40 seconds back, 5 seconds ahead of American contender Tejay van Garderen.
Other contenders Andreas Kloden and Peter Sagan lost 43 seconds and 35 seconds respectively, but Ryder Hesjedal, last year’s Giro d’Italia winner, was only 19 seconds off the pace.
Former Tour de France winner Andy Schleck lost more than a minute, while 2011 Giro winner Michele Scarponi lost exactly 60 seconds. Saxo-Tinkoff’s Roman Kreuziger finished 44 seconds back.