Caleb Ewan completed a hattrick of stage wins in the 2017 OVO Energy Tour of Britain, sprinting to victory in Aldeburgh on the Suffolk coast at the end of Stage Six, as Lars Boom finished safely within the pack to retain his overall lead and the OVO Energy Green Jersey.

Ewan hit the front coming out of the final corner, swinging off Maximiliano Richeze’s wheel to power comfortably to the line to add to his wins in Kelso and Scunthorpe.

Fernando Gaviria took second after his lead out was disrupted as Zdenek Stybar pulled his foot out of the pedal through the final corner, while Dylan Groenewegen took third, and with it the final bonus seconds to further help protect his Lotto NL Jumbo teammate Boom’s lead.

Stybar had led into the final right-hander, but took a tighter line and then unclipped, taking Ewan’s teammate Luka Mezgec wide, but at the same time opening the run onto the finish straight for the explosive power of the young Orica Scott man.

“We got information that the final corner was very tight and a little bit off camber as well so we wanted to be in a good position there,” said Ewan post-race.  “I was pretty much in a perfect position exactly where I wanted to be then one of the Quick-Step guys went through the corner and took a really bad line, he unclipped and pushed my lead out man Luka out and I lost him through the corner.  I decided I’d just go for it there and it was a little bit longer sprint than I hoped for, but luckily it paid off.

“I came here with this as a target race for the back of the season for me and training’s been going well.  I did want to come here in good form so I couldn’t be happier with how it’s started.”

Behind the leading trio Alexander Kristoff and Andrea Pasqualon took fourth and fifth, while there was another top ten finish for JLT Condor’s Brenton Jones in sixth.

The day’s seven rider break took a while to be established in what was the fastest opening hour to any of the five road stages this year, but with Hayden McCormick and James Shaw within the group and both just over a minute down on Boom, their advantage was never allowed to exceed three-minutes.

“The break worked well together but unfortunately it was three kilometres too far for us today,” reflected Shaw afterwards.

“There was a slight glimmer of hope about 15-kilometres to go, they came past with the board showing 1’35” and I thought this is going to be a close one.  They came past us with three-kilometres to go, they must’ve really put the hammer down.”

James Shaw Lotto Soudal Podium Aldeburgh Stage 6 Combativity Award

Picture by Simon Wilkinson/SWpix.com – 08/09/2017 – Cycling – OVO Energy Tour of Britain – Stage 6 Newmarket to Aldeburgh
Finish at Aldeburgh – Lotto Soudal’s James Shaw takes the High5 Combativity award for Stage 6 of the Tour of Britain.
James SHAW

Shaw’s reward for his efforts was a trip to the podium for the HIGH5 Combativity Award, while ONE Pro Cycling’s McCormick moved up three places in the overall to inside the top 30 thanks to bonus seconds collected.

With fourth on the stage Alexander Kristoff of Team Katusha Alpecin moves into the lead of the Wiggle Points Jersey by eight points over Gaviria while Geraint Thomas remains the best placed Brit overall and leader of the Adnams classification, sponsored by the Suffolk brewer.

Both the SKODA King of the Mountains and Eisberg Sprints Jerseys remain on the shoulders of Jacob Scott (An Post Chain Reaction) and Graham Briggs (JLT Condor) respectively going into the penultimate stage.

Briggs lies just one point behind Scott in the climber’s category, with Lukasz Owsian a further four points behind.  The JLT Condor man has just a one point advantage over Mark McNally in the Eisberg Sprints category, sponsored by alcohol free wine brand Eisberg.

For full results and standings from Stage Six, please click here.

Stage Seven of the OVO Energy Tour of Britain crosses Hertfordshire, Buckinghamshire, Oxfordshire and Gloucestershire as the race heads west from Hemel Hempstead in the borough of Dacorum to Cheltenham for a finish alongside Imperial Gardens. The 185-kilometre stage begins at 11:00, with live coverage on ITV4 from 10:45.

Highlights from the sixth stage of the OVO Energy Tour of Britain will be on ITV4 at 8pm on Friday evening (8 September) with a repeat the following morning.

The OVO Energy Tour of Britain is British Cycling’s premier road cycling event, giving cycling fans the opportunity to see the world’s best teams and riders competing on their door step, taking place between Sunday 3 and Sunday 10 September 2017.