Porte cruises to victory at Dauphine

·2-min read

Australia's Richie Porte has avoided any hiccups on the final stage to win the Criterium du Dauphine, a key race in the build up to the Tour de France.

Riding for Ineos Grenadiers, Port went into the final stage from La Lechere-les-Bains to Les Gets in the overall lead, and he finished 17 seconds clear of nearest rival Alexey Lutsenko of Astana-Premier Tech.

Porte's team mate and 2018 Tour de France champion Geraint Thomas took third spot after overcoming a late crash.

After two previous runner-up spots at the race, the 36-year-old Porte was relieved to finally be able to stand at the top of the podium.

"This race, having been second here twice and one year losing second in the last kilometre, to finally win it I'm just over the moon," Porte said after the race.

"All the sacrifices, time away from my wife and two kids, is worth it. This team Ineos Grenadiers were just absolutely brilliant today."

Thomas suffered a scare ahead of the Tour de France starting later this month when he crashed on the descent on the final climb, but he recovered well to help team mate Porte make it safely to the finish line.

"When I saw Geraint crash it wasn't ideal for the last six kilometres. He has some pretty bad road rash, but he'll be tip top for the Tour," Porte added.

Mark Padun (Bahrain Victorious) claimed his second stage win in two days, and the 24-year-old also took the mountain classification after powering past his rivals early in the day.

The Ukrainian slipped away from his breakaway companions with 30 kms remaining and never looked back, taking the stage win to round off the finest weekend of his career.

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