Sunday, January 23, 2011

Team Sky rule in Adelaide

Ben Swift and Greg Henderson wrapped up the Tour Down Under in perfect style by sealing a remarkable one-two triumph in Adelaide.

The duo were catapulted into contention by a near perfect lead-out display on the final laps of the city centre circuit and romped home to earn a repeat of last year's memorable success.

Matt Goss rounded off the podium in third position but that wasn't enough to wrestle the overall victory from Cameron Meyer.

The day had not begun ideally for Team Sky as Simon Gerrans was forced to retire early on, but the action was brisk from the off and Michael Matthews moved into contention for the general classification when he pipped Goss on the opening sprint of the day.

Goss failed to secure any bonus seconds at all on the second intermediate sprint after Graeme Brown beat Jos Van Leijin and Allan Davis to the line, which meant HTC-Highroad needed to go all out for the stage win.

The American squad had been covering all the early breaks, and also had to work hard to nullify a late seven-man move which was headed by Stuart O'Grady and Nicki Sorensen.

That ultimately worked to Team Sky's advantage, who gradually moved to the front of the bunch and then peeled off one-by-one in textbook style to gift Swift and Henderson an outstanding victory.

That performance also lifted Swift to third in the overall standings, although Goss's third-placed finish on the day left him two seconds adrift of Meyer in the battle for the ochre jersey. Goss did top the sprint classification however, with Luke Roberts scooping the King of the Mountains crown.

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