Elia Viviani (Deceuninck-QuickStep) held off Caleb Ewan (Lotto Soudal) and Daryl Impey (Mitchelton-Scott) in a tight finish to win the Cadel Evans Great Ocean Road race on Sunday.
Viviani was able to stay with the lead group over four tough climbs and emerge from the slipstream of Deceuninck-Quick Step teammate Michael Morkov in the final metres to pip Ewan at the post.
Ewan was unlucky to find himself boxed in at the start of the final sprint and while he finished fast, he ran out of road to overhaul Viviani.
The 163 kilometre race, which starts and finishes in Geelong, outside Melbourne, and takes in the world-renowned Great Ocean Road, has seen a different nationality win each year since its inception in 2015.
Viviani came to Australia on a mission after being beaten into second last year by Jay McCarthy, who could only finish eighth this time, and he was over the moon.
“It’s feels amazing. I was really focused on this race,” said Viviani. “I was really happy with the performance of the team.
“I have to say thanks to the best team in the world, with Michael (Morkov) doing a fantastic lead-out for me. With his help, I’m always confident of taking the win.”
Cadel Evans Great Ocean Road Race 2019 results (Geelong – Geelong):
|1||Elia Viviani (Deceuninck-QuickStep)|
|2||Caleb Ewan (Lotto Soudal)|
|3||Daryl Impey (Mitchelton-Scott)|
|4||Ryan Gibbons (Dimension Data)|
|5||Jens Debusschere (Katusha-Alpecin)|
|6||Luke Rowe (Team Sky)|
|7||Michael Mørkøv (Deceuninck-QuickStep)|
|8||Jay McCarthy (Bora-hansgrohe)|
|9||Owain Doull (Team Sky)|
|10||Luis Leon Sanchez (Astana)|