Porte Wins Santos Tour Down Under
Australian Richie Porte (BMC Racing Team) has crossed the finish line at the Santos Tour Down Under stage 6 criterium to secure the overall win in the race for the first time in his professional cycling career.
The final stage of this year's Tour Down Under, which was fiercely contested in the streets of Adelaide, was won by Orica-Scott rider Caleb Ewan in 01:55:28. 22-year-old Ewan finished ahead of World Champion Peter Sagan of Team Bora-Hansgrohe and Team UAE's Marko Kump.
"I actually joked with my girlfriend at the start of the eek that I would go for four stage (victories), but I didn't actually think it was going to be possible," Ewan told Roadcycling.com.
"I felt like the pressure increased as I won more. It's not usual that you get lucky enough to win all of the sprints in one race and I was just waiting for something bad to happen because there's a whole lot of luck that goes into winning a stage," Ewan added.
After finishing the Tour Down Under in second place in both 2015 and 2016, eventual general classification winner Porte showed remarkable form and the needed dominance in the 2017 edition of the race with two impressive solo victories on the Paracombe and Willunga climbs, to win with the biggest winning margin in the race's history.
With a 48-second lead before today's final stage 6, Porte, who rode for the British Team Sky before moving to BMC at the start of the 2016 season, was kept safe by his teammates as the peloton tackled the 20-lap circuit around Adelaide and crossed the line safely to retain his lead in the general classification.
"It's an incredible relief. I think back at nine years ago when this race really kicked off my career. This is where I came a wild card. Then two years later I was in the WorldTour. So to win it is a massive relief. I've been close two times before so it just feels fantastic," Porte told Roadcycling.com.
The overall podium was completed by Esteban Chaves (Orica-Scott, 2nd) and Jay McCarthy in third for his Bora-Hansgrohe team.
BMC Racing Team's Rohan Dennis, who won the Tour Down Under in 2015, finished in sixth place overall and won the Tanya Denver award for the best-placed South Australian, a testament to his loyal support of teammate Porte throughout the week.