A close second for Ewan on the penultimate stage at the OVO Tour of Britain 

Sat 9 Sep 2017


Three-time stage winner Caleb Ewan came close to claiming his fourth victory of the OVO Tour of Britain today, but had to settle for second place after another incredibly close sprint on the penultimate stage. 

The rainy 185kilometre day was animated by a breakaway of six riders that included ORICA-SCOTT rider Rob Power. The leaders were eventually swallowed up with 30kilometres to go and further attacks came with three riders surviving ahead until the final two kilometres.

ORICA-SCOTT then led the way through the final kilometre with Ewan launching from the wheel of final lead-out man Slovenian champion Luka Mezgec, however, it was Dylan Groenewegen (Lotto-JumboNL) who jumped first and claimed the victory on a lunge to the line.

“I am pretty disappointed to get so close today after such a good lead-out from the boys,” Ewan explained. “I just waited a few seconds too long and then Dylan got the jump on me and I didn’t get back up to him in time before the line.”

“It was really cold and wet again today so that made things harder. There’s one more stage to go and hopefully that will be another bunch sprint so I can have another go.”

How it happened:

After many attacks at the start of today’s stage seven, a group of three riders finally got away after 20kilometres. The trio included Power for ORICA-SCOTT and shortly after three other riders quickly bridged across to make a front leading group of six.

Power, Steel van Hoff (One-ProCycling), Dexter Gardias (Bike-Channel), Jacob Scott (AnPost), Lukasz Owsian (CCC Pro Team), and Russell Downing (Team JLT Condor) established a four minute advantage and in typical British fashion the rain started to pour.

Lotto-JumboNL, the race leading team, drove the peloton controlling the distance to the escapees and with 40kilometres to go their advantage plummeted down to just one minute.

A group of five riders attempted to bridge across but the attempt was short lived as the peloton rapidly made the catch with 30kilometres remaining.

Immediately as the peloton regrouped, Tony Martin (Katusha-Alpecin), attacked and opened up a solo lead. Hovering just 20seconds ahead, Martin fought on all the way until 12kilometres to go when the reduced peloton made the catch.

10kilometres left and the race headed up Cleeve hill which caused the peloton to significantly reduce after various attacks. Ewan remained in contention alongside his teammates in the group as three new riders led into the final five kilometres.

Despite the predictions, the tough stage concluded once again with a bunch sprint with one more likely sprint stage remaining tomorrow.

OVO Tour of Britain stage 7 results:

1. Dylan Groenewegen (Lotto-JumboNL) 4:26
2. Caleb Ewan (ORICA-SCOTT) ST
3. Brenton Jones (JLT-Condor) ST

General classification after stage 7:

1. Lars Boom (Lotto-JumboNL) 26:37
2. Stefan Kung (BMC) +0.08
3. Victor Campenaerts (Lotto-JumboNL) +0:09

Photo courtesy of TDWsport