Three-time overall champion Caleb Ewan has waited until the final day of the 2017 Mitchelton Bay Cycling Classic to raise his hands in victory.
Ewan sprinted to victory ahead of Brenton Jones (JLT Condor) and Mathew Gibson (Condor) in Williamstown, having crashed out of contention on day one in Geelong and supporting teammate Michael Hepburn to victory in Portarlington yesterday.
Using his experience, Ewan launched his sprint before the final corner to get the jump on his rivals and lead them down the finish straight.
“Yesterday I had a bit of a hit out and today, to win the sprint, gives me confidence for the races to come,” Ewan said.
“My success here has been down to hitting out pretty early. I start my sprint from more than 300m, I don’t know why it catches people out because I have done it the last few years, but as long as I keep doing that and getting to that final corner first I am pretty positive.”
Earlier in the race a breakaway of two riders, Nathan Haas (Dimension Data) and Sam Spokes (Total Rush) rode away from the peloton but JLT Condor, in support of race leader Ian Bibby, kept control of the pair before it was brought back together with 10 minutes remaining.
With five laps to go, ORICA-SCOTT hit the front with Damien Howson taking the first turn before leaving Hepburn and Mitch Docker as the final lead out for Ewan.
ORICA-SCOTT wrap up the first race on 2017 with two stage victories and now turn their attention to the Australian Championships in Ballarat, with the criterium tomorrow evening, time trial on Thursday and road race on Sunday.
1- Caleb Ewan (Orica Scott) 1h00’00’’
2- Brenton Jones (JLT Condor) s.t.
3- Mathew Gibson (Condor) s.t.
4- Ian Bibby (JLT Condor) + 4’’
5- Anthony Giacoppo (Isowhey Sports Swisswellness) s.t.
6- Samuel Spokes (Total Rush) s.t.
7- Ed Clancy (JLT Condor) + 6’’
8- Mitch Docker (Orica Scott) s.t.
9- Alex Frame (JLT Condor) + 10’’
10- Ali Slater (JLT Condor) + 14’’
Final general classification
1- Ian Bibby (JLT Condor) 29 pts
2- Mathew Gibson (Condor) 24 pts
3- Caleb Ewan (Orica Scott) 18 pts
4- Brenton Jones (JLT Condor) 17 pts
5- Anthony Giacoppo (Isowhey Sports Swisswellness) 16 pts
6- Samuel Spokes (Total Rush) 14 pts
7- Michael Hepburn (Orica Scott) 12 pts
8- Jesse Kerrison (Isowhey Sports Swisswellness) 10 pts
9- Cameron Bayly (Isowhey Sports Swisswellness) 9 pts
10- Patrick Lane (VTwo Team) 5 pts
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