Race Report: Cadel Evans Great Ocean Road Race

Geelong (AFP) – Italian sprint king Elia Viviani held off Australian rival Caleb Ewan and South African Daryl Impey 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.


Lotto Soudal rider 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 who finished in 3hr 54min 35sec.


The 163 kilometre (101 mile) 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."


The Italian added on Twitter: "Boom! What a way to end this Australia 

adventure with the boys."

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The 2020 edition of Paris-Nice will be available live and on demand for FloBikes viewers in the U.S. and Canada on February 29th. The historic "Race To The Sun" takes place March 8-15, traveling along the scenic roads of France as the riders head southward, finishing on the Côte d'Azur in Nice.

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Omloop Het Nieuwsblad is the kickoff weekend for the spring classics, specifically the cobbled classics. At 200 kilometers long, Omloop is not as big a day in the saddle for the men as the Tour of Flanders, but Omloop asserts itself on the calendar in ways other than distance. 

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Belgian Champion Yves Lampaert begins the "serious" part of his season starting with the Omloop Het Nieuwsblad on February 29. The race kicks off a string of one-day Cobbled Classics, ending with Paris-Roubaix in April.

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Froome Returns, Ackermann Takes UAE First Stage

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Chris Froome returned to competitive cycling for the first time in eight months as German Pascal Ackermann sprinted to an opening-stage victory on the UAE Tour on Sunday.

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The UAE Tour in 2020 has drawn an impressive field of GC favorites. Tadej Pogacar and Alejandro Valverde enter the race as the two favorites, but a host of worthy challengers will line up in the early season race to test their form.

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Chris Froome's comeback will dominate the second edition of the UAE Tour when it pushes off from Dubai on Sunday, February 23. The event will be Froome's first race back after breaking his leg in June and undergoing extensive rehabilitation.

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The 2020 Omloop Het Nieuwsblad will be available live and on demand for FloBikes viewers in the U.S. and Canada on February 29th. Omloop Het Nieuwsblad is the opening race of the cobbled classics, featuring iconic climbs such as the Muur van Geraardsbergen.