'Over the moon' Aussie Porte wins Criterium du Dauphine

·2-min read
Team Ineos' Richie Porte of Australia

Australian Richie Porte won the Criterium du Dauphine on Sunday as Mark Padun of Bahrain Victorious picked up his second stage win.

Recent Ineos recruit Porte, third in last year's Tour de France, went into the eighth and final stage in the overall lead and kept the advantage in the French Alps.

Porte eventually finished 17 seconds ahead of Kazakh Alexey Lutsenko in the overall standings.

For the 36-year-old Porte it was a sweet victory. He saw a potential victory in the Dauphine slip away on the final day back in 2017.

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

"All the sacrifices, time away from my wife and two kids, is worth it."

The Australian's Welsh teammate Geraint Thomas, winner of the 2018 Tour, rounded out the podium, 29sec off the pace.

Thomas fell in the descent from Joux-Plane, less than 10km from the finish line in the ski resort of Les Gets, but managed to reel himself back into the group containing the race favourites.

Porte becomes just the second Australian winner of the Criterium, the traditional warm-up event to the Tour which gets underway on June 26, after Phil Anderson in 1985.

He said he is "under no illusions" about his role for his star-studded team at the Tour.

"To win this race just means so so much to me. It's a race I’ve always enjoyed, and to finally win it at 36 years old is a sweet moment," he said.

Padun won his second stage of the race the day after his victorious climb from La Plagne, the Ukrainian racing ahead on the first slopes of the Joux-Plane, an 11.6km pass with an average incline of 8.5 percent, and never looking like being caught from then on.

The 24-year-old, who won the race's king of the mountains classification, continued his team's good run following a impressive Giro d'Italia in which Damiano Caruso finished second behind Egan Bernal.

jm/lp/pb/td/iwd

Our goal is to create a safe and engaging place for users to connect over interests and passions. In order to improve our community experience, we are temporarily suspending article commenting