Nikias Arndt Wins Cadel Evans Great Ocean Road Race
Following a great sprint it was Nikias Arndt (GER) who took the first victory of the team's road season at Cadel Evans Great Ocean Road Race
On his Giant TCR, Arndt out sprinted the leading group of 23 riders after completing the 174km course alongside some of Victoria's most spectacular scenery.
Fans were treated to onboard GoPro footage along with live rider data from Velon.
With 10kms to go Esteban Chaves (Orica-Scott), Sergio Henao (Sky) and Nathan Haas (Dimension Data) started a late attack. BMC'S Richie Porte and Lucas Hamilton bridged across with Rafa Valls (Lotto Soudal). With 5km the group cam back together.
Chross Froome attacked with Haas, Gesink and Valls jumping on his wheel before Porte launched a counter attack. Porte was digging deep with his solo time trial effort that was matched by Froome to ensure it was a doomed move.
"When it didn't happen in the climb I thought to myself that I really want to win this race so I have to attack. I did a nice little attack but at the end of the day it didn't quite pay off, but still a good way to start the season by winning the Santos Tour Down Under and come here and have a bit of fun," Porte explained of his move.
Bauer launched the first counter attack before Meyer made his move with 800 metres to go. However, Arndt had other ideas and inside the final 10 metres he jumped the Australian and held off the fast finishing Gerrans for his first win on Australian soil and first win since May's Giro d'Italia.
Race winner Nikias Arndt said: "Today the team did a truly awesome job, Wilco and I were protected really well up until the final. We had a good plan to cover different scenarios on the difficult final lap. I had to fight really hard to survive the final climbs and the guys made sure I was set up for the sprint. I am really happy to finish off the trip to Australia like this and pleased that I could reward the team with a win after all of their hard work over the past three weeks."
"With such a difficult final lap we had to have two cards to play as we didn't know how the race would eventuate. We had Wilco there to cover the moves on the climbs on the final lap. We also had Nikias there in case there was a slightly bigger group that came to the finish. In the end our plan with Nikias came through. The guys went full for it and showed great dedication and Nikias proved to have the fastest legs. It's a great result for him and the team," said the team's coach Luke Roberts (AUS).
Cadel Evans Great Ocean Road Race 2017 Results Top 10
1 Nikias Arndt (Sunweb) 4:19:15
2 Simon Gerrans (Orica-Scott) ,,
3 Cameron Meyer (Australia) ,,
4 Jhonatan Restrepo (Katusha-Alpecin) ,,
5 Luke Rowe (Team Sky) ,,
6 Petr Vakoc (Quick-Step Floors) ,,
7 Nathan Haas (Dimension Data) ,,
8 Gianluca Brambilla (Quick-Step Floors) ,,
9 Jay Mccarthy (Bora-hansgrohe) ,,
10 Paul Martens (LottoNl-Jumbo) ,,