Aussie Vine and reborn Cav shine in Turkey

·2-min read

While world cycling celebrates the renaissance of Mark Cavendish after he sprinted to his fourth stage win at the Tour of Turkey, the sport in Australia could enjoy the significant breakthrough of newcomer Jay Vine as he finished the race as runner-up overall.

Britain's former world champion Cavendish edged out Belgian Jasper Philipsen on the finish line of the tour's eighth and final stage on Sunday, a 160.3km slog from Kusadasi to Bodrum, to earn his 150th professional race win.

Behind the sprinting great, 25-year-old Australian rookie Vine, in his first World Tour race as a professional, ended up losing the general classification by just one second to Spanish overall race winner Jose Manuel Diaz.

It was a remarkable debut for the man from Townsville, who has embarked on a one-year professional contract with Belgian team Alpecin-Fenix which he was awarded after winning last year's Zwift's Academy program for promising talent.

In a dramatic finale, Vine crashed on a tight bend just 2.3km from the finish line, but being within the final 3km, he was awarded the same time as the main bunch up ahead.

But for that crash, Vine even felt he might have done better and taken an amazing overall win.

"We couldn't get a time bonus during the stage this time and I went down in the final corner. It's when the dream sort of died," he said.

"It was pure racing all the way today. I think at some stage it was every man for himself, trying to deal with crosswinds and get away with small groups.

"Second overall, it'll take a little bit to sink in because it was all about trying to go for the win. After taking seconds yesterday, it was possible.

"But for my first pro race with a pro team, it's a pretty good result."

Vine had already impressed earlier in the race with a second place on the Tour's queen stage - but even then the Queenslander wasn't satisfied with the minor placing.

Cavendish completed his revival week, during which he had earlier claimed three wins in a row, for the Deceuninck-QuickStep team with another consummate win.

The 35-year-old from the Isle of Man had also won four stages of this race seven years ago as he equalled Andre Greipel's record of 11 Tour of Turkey wins.

"We had an amazing week, we really enjoyed ourselves and taking my 150th pro victory as part of this incredible team is just the cherry on the cake," said Cavendish.