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by Shane Stokes
January 23, 2017
In today’s CyclingTips Daily News Digest: Richie Porte wins the 2017 Tour Down Under, Caleb Ewan takes a fourth stage win; Roe triumphs on day one of the New Zealand Cycle Classic; Van der Har heads Telenet-Fidea one-two-three in Hoogerheide World Cup; Vos the boss in Hoogerheide World Cup; Haas edged out for Santos Tour Down Under podium; De Gendt scoops King of the Mountains jersey on final stage; Positive test followed by suicide of rider’s coach; Santos Tour Down Under, stage 5 highlights; Santos Tour Down Under, stage 6 highlights; VTWO/CyclingTips Carpark Climb; 360 degree video from Hoogerheide World Cup
Level with Willunga Hill stage winner Richie Porte heading into the final stage of the Santos Tour Down Under on Sunday, Thomas De Gendt edged out the BMC Racing Team rider in the King of the Mountains classification.
The duo had began the day deadlocked on 32 points but with Porte concentrating on securing his overall title, De Gendt set out to scoop the second competition. While the final stage was a criterium in Adelaide, points were on offer at two intermediate points.
De Gendt got clear early on with Gianluca Brambilla (QuickStep Floors) and while the duo were caught before the first of those KOM sprints, assistance by Adam Hansen plus a big effort from De Gendt saw him take the maximum points there. A break then soaked up the available points in the remaining sprint, sealing the prize for the Belgian.
“Before the start, we had agreed within the team that we would keep the group together until the first KOM sprint,” he said afterwards. “Sander Armée closed the gap on the escapees. Adam Hansen was in the right place at the right moment and he accelerated with me on his wheel. Adam knows what to do in these kind of situations thanks to his experience in the train of André Greipel. It’s thanks to the teamwork that I could pick up these extra points and can take the KOM jersey home with me.
“It’s always nice to win a classification in a stage race. Several of our sponsors are on the Australian market as well, so for them it’s great that a Lotto Soudal rider can go up on stage. For me this is a confirmation after the hard work I’ve done the past winter.”