Lachlan Morton wins the Tour of Utah
After losing the overall Tour of Utah lead to Andrew Talansky (Cannondale – Drapac) in Saturday’s stage 6, Jelly Belly’s Lachlan Morton surged forward with a bold attack to win the seventh and final stage in Park City.
The 24-year-old Australian, who began the day 22 seconds down on the general classification, attacked on the lower slopes of the hors-categorie climb to Empire Pass and held out all the way to the finish line to win the stage and the overall title.
Axeon Hagens Berman’s Adrien Costa crossed the line in Park City 31 seconds after Morton to nab second on the day and to seal second overall, while Darwin Atapuma finished third but was not able to leapfrog Talansky onto the podium.
Morton was prepared to make a big gamble and so the peloton had barely hit the climb which is known as one of the hardest in the country before he took off. He immediately flew past the remnants of the early break and from there he never looked behind. Throughout the entire climb he kept increasing his advantage until he crested the summit with a big gap that allowed him to take no risks on the descent. In the end, he did what most had thought impossible yesterday as he again turned the GC on its heads and came away with both the stage win and the overall win.
The scenario couldn’t have been more different for Talansky who found himself in a completely different position than yesterday. After having followed a strange attack and spent part of the stage in a chase group, the race leader was distanced on the lower slopes of the climb and from there it was one long attempt to try to limit the losses. His teammate Joe Dombrowski did a marvelous job to help his leader but he could do nothing against Morton, Adrien Costa and Darwin Atapuma (BMC) who all left him behind. In the end, he slipped to third overall behind Morton and Costa who again proved his impressive potential by taking second on both the stage and GC.
Stage 7 Results, Top 10 Tour of Utah
1 MORTON Lachlan David JELLY BELLY pb MAXXIS J 3:08:07
2 COSTA Adrien * AXEON HAGENS BERMAN 3:08:38
3 ATAPUMA HURTADO Darwin BMC RACING TEAM 3:08:57
4 TALANSKY Andrew CANNONDALE-DRAPAC PRO CYCLING 3:09:58
5 DOMBROWSKI Joseph Lloyd CANNONDALE-DRAPAC PRO CYCLING 3:10:00
6 BRITTON Rob RALLY CYCLING3:10:10
7 SENNI Manuel BMC RACING TEAM 3:10:42
8 DIDIER Laurent TREK-SEGAFREDO 3:11:22 0
9 ROSSKOPF Joseph BMC RACING TEAM 3:11:43
10 BETTIOL Alberto CANNONDALE-DRAPAC PRO CYCLING 3:11:56
Final General Classification, Tour of Utah, Top 10
1 MORTON Lachlan David JELLY BELLY pb MAXXIS 27:12:49
2 COSTA Adrien * AXEON HAGENS BERMAN 27:13:58
3 TALANSKY Andrew CANNONDALE-DRAPAC PRO CYCLING 27:14:28
4 ATAPUMA HURTADO Darwin BMC RACING TEAM 27:14:46
5 BRITTON Rob RALLY CYCLING 27:16:49
6 ROSSKOPF Joseph BMC RACING TEAM 27:18:48
7 EISENHART Taylor * BMC RACING TEAM 27:19:41
8 1DOMBROWSKI Joseph Lloyd CANNONDALE-DRAPAC PRO CYCLING 27:20:05
9 SQUIRE Robbie HOLOWESKO/CITADEL pb HINCAPIE 27:21:27
10 DIDIER Laurent TREK-SEGAFREDO 27:21:27