Team Sky wins the Hammer Series
The inaugural Hammer Series event went down to the wire as Team Sky dug deep to pull off a thrilling final sprint victory
Overall victory wasn't decided until the final metres after Team Sky passed Team Sunweb. Team Sky came out top in the final team sprint.
Danny van Poppel, Elia Viviani, Jon Dibben, Owain Doull and Tao Geoghegan Hart started the final team trial with a lead of 32 seconds.
But their margin margin was gradually reduced as Team Sunweb finally caught Team Sky with 3.5 kms to go on the 44.7-kilometre course.
But Team Sky weren’t finished and BoyVan Poppel attacked down the inside of the final right-hand bend before the finish straight.
Boy Van Poppel pulled hard with Viviani, Doull and Geoghegan Hart making up the four men needing to cross the line first. With Team Sunweb hot on their tails, Tao Geoghegan Hart sprinted long and hard over the last 600 metres to secure the Team Sky's fourth man over the line and to win by a single second.
Van Poppel said: “I had to bring them to the last corner in front and it was really close – but if I didn’t do that, we didn’t win.”
Doull said: “With those time gaps and that length of circuit, it was always going to be close … we thought just back off, recover and try and come past them in the last kilometre.”
“For sure the lead-outs that I’ve been a part of this year with Elia helped a lot. I’m lost for words at the last kilometre that Van Poppel pulled out. It was unbelievable how fast we overtook them. I was really sprinting from about 600 metres to go and I think everyone was on the limit in the final metres. Thankfully I had a bit more left than those Sunweb guys. It was a good job by the whole team”, said Geoghegan Hart.
2017 Hammer Series Team Overall Result
1 Team Sky 0:51:59
2 Team Sunweb 0:00:01
3 Orica-Scott 0:00:36
4 Lotto Soudal
5 Movistar Team 0:00:37
6 Team LottoNL-Jumbo 0:00:39
7 Cannondale-Drapac 0:00:41
8 Nippo - Vini Fantini 0:00:45