Daryl Impey (Mitchelton-Scott) surprised even himself when he won the WorldTour season-opening Tour Down Under on the streets of Adelaide on Sunday.
Impey secured the biggest win of his career when he finished safely in the peloton behind stage winner Andre Greipel, who beat Impey’s teammate Caleb Ewan with a lunge to the finish line.
Impey went into Sunday’s final stage on the same time as pre-race favourite Richie Porte but ahead of the Tasmanian on a count back.
All he needed to do to secure the overall win was to finish safely, an outcome that appeared never to be in doubt on the 90-kilometre stage on the Adelaide street circuit.
Impey came into the race as the final lead-out rider for Ewan and was never expected to challenge for general classification.
But his determined ride up Willunga Hill to finish second to Porte in Saturday’s penultimate stage was enough to place him level on time with Porte and ahead on a count back because of his superior finishing positions in the earlier stages.
“Coming into the race I didn’t expect to win it but sometimes the stars line up and everything goes well,” he said.
“I worked really hard in the off-season so I’m happy to get this win.”
🇩🇪 IT'S GREIPEL ON THE LINE 🇩🇪@CalebEwan is pipped at the post by the great @AndreGreipel, who now has 18 stage wins at the #TDU!!! What a finish to Be Safe Be Seen @MACofSA Stage 6!! pic.twitter.com/P2O3BHThww
— Santos Tour Down Under 🐨🚴 (@tourdownunder) January 21, 2018
Tour Down Under 2018 – stage 6 results (Adelaide – Adelaide):
|1||Andre Greipel (Lotto Soudal)|
|2||Caleb Ewan (Mitchelton-Scott)|
|3||Peter Sagan (Bora-hansgrohe)|
|4||Phil Bauhaus (Team Sunweb)|
|5||Elia Viviani (Quick-Step Floors)|
|6||Steele von Hoff (UniSA-Australia)|
|7||Simone Consonni (UAE Team Emirates)|
|8||Mads Pedersen (Trek-Segafredo)|
|9||Carlos Barbero (Movistar)|
|10||Mads Würtz Schmidt (Katusha-Alpecin)|
Final general classification:
|1||Daryl Impey (Mitchelton-Scott)|
|2||Richie Porte (BMC)|
|3||Tom-Jelte Slagter (Dimension Data)|
|4||Diego Ulissi (UAE Team Emirates)|
|5||Dries Devenyns (Quick-Step Floors)|
|6||Egan Bernal (Team Sky)|
|7||Gorka Izagirre (Bahrain-Merida)|
|8||Luis Leon Sanchez (Astana)|
|9||Ruben Guerreiro (Trek-Segafredo)|
|10||Robert Gesink (LottoNL-Jumbo)|