In today’s edition of the CyclingTips Daily News Digest: Wout van Aert stuns to win his third-straight CX world title; Sanne Cant takes back-to-back CX world titles; Esteban Chaves wins the Jayco Herald Sun Tour, Sam Crome claims the final stage; Alejandro Valverde wins the Volta a la Comunitat Valenciana; Sergio Henao takes his second-straight Colombian road title; Tony Gallopin wins Etoile de Besseges with final-stage victory; UCI announces use of video commissaires in biggest road races; Giro organisers want guarantee Froome’s results will be valid; Vincenzo Nibali set for new challenge at the Tour of Flanders; Hong Kong businessman Adam Kwok invests in Mitchelton-BikeExchange; Esteban’s Extras; Live-stream slip-up.
Van Aert and Cant win CX Worlds; Chaves wins the Sun Tour: Daily News Digest
The Australian summer of cycling began in the wake of tragedy, less than a fortnight after the untimely death of Victorian cyclist Jason Lowndes. It ended with an emotional tribute to Lowndes, courtesy of his friend Sam Crome (Bennelong-SwissWellness), winner of the final stage of the Jayco Herald Sun Tour.
Crome celebrated emphatically as he crossed the finish line in Kinglake, winning the stage 4 sprint from a significantly reduced peloton. In doing so Crome beat WorldTour riders Cameron Meyer (Mitchelton-Scott; second) and Ruben Guerreiro (Trek-Segafredo; third) for stage honours in what was the biggest win of his career.
“It’s been a really tough time,” Crome said. “Late last year that was one of my best mates Jason Lowndes that was killed in the accident by the car. So it really hit home with us all at Bendigo. He just would have loved that so that one was for him today. He’d be stoked looking down at that one, that’s for sure.”
Also in the winning group was Esteban Chaves (Mitchelton-Scott), the Colombian climber who had won Saturday’s queen stage to propel himself into the overall lead. Damien Howson (Mitchelton-Scott) was there too, the defending champion sitting third on GC. With Meyer finishing second, Mitchelton-Scott were able to secure an impressive clean sweep of the overall podium.
“It’s a really nice feeling to win here in the home town — this is like [our] home race,” he said. “We are really happy. The team worked really well again — Edmo [Alex Edmondson] and Heppy [Michael Hepburn] and Luca [Lucas Hamilton] — they do a fantastic job for more than half of the race. And in the final we needed to control the last two climbs. And it’s unbelievable — one, two, three on GC. I can’t believe [it].”
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