Impey seventh overall after penultimate day of Tour Down Under

Sat 24 Jan 2015

South African Daryl Impey will go into the final stage of the Tour Down Under in seventh position overall following the queen stage on Willunga Hill today.

Impey finished 12th on the penultimate stage, 28seconds behind Ritchie Porte who was too strong on the final climb and won solo. Rohan Dennis (BMC Racing) held on for second position to retain the overall lead.

“We committed everything to the final to limit the time loss on the climb,” Impey said.

“Everybody kept me out of trouble and then I had (Simon) Clarke and Cameron (Meyer) there setting the pace at the bottom of the last climb.  Then all of the big climbers opened up and got quite a big gap on me.

“I suffered all of the way to the finish line and am still top ten on GC which is pretty good and we have the sprint jersey as a consolation prize.”

Sport director Matt White said the team followed the plan, and rode strongly.

“It was always going to be a day of survival today,” White said.  “Daryl is not a pure climber, especially against some of the guys we are talking about Tour de France winners, Grand Tour general classification contenders.”

“It was a very aggressive day and Astana made it very hard on the last circuit.  We have never had such a small group arrive at the bottom of Willunga before.

“We were well represented. The boys did a good job shutting down that split in the last five kilometres and then Cameron did a good job keeping the pace regular before the inevitable attacks from Ritchie Porte.”

Tomorrow’s final day of the Santos Tour Down Under consists of 20 laps of a 4.5km circuit in the centre of Adelaide.

“The number one goal for us tomorrow would be to try to win the stage, but going up against Marcel Kittel is not going to be easy,” White said.

“If we can get enough seconds we can move up in the general classification which would be nice.”