As in 2007, the final day was going to be all about the time bonuses available at the Hot Spot Sprints as Wirral rider Steve Cummings tried to take victory in his home Tour.
Sunny skies greeted The Tour for its third visit to Blackpool, as the peloton enjoyed a slight lie in due to the shorter nature of the final stage. Despite a relaxed, end-of-term atmosphere at the start, the attacks were soon going in on the flat coastal roads that marked the run down to Liverpool.
Eventually a three man group of Malcolm Elliott, Magnus Backstedt and Dean Downing went clear, leading The Tour of Britain onto the circuit around the centre of European Capital of Culture, Liverpool.
With six laps of the fast circuit to round of the race, the trio didn't last long off the front, as the races' sprinters looked for one final chance to do battle.
At the front too were the Brits, as Cummings and Stannard both pinched bonus seconds at the Hot Spot Sprint beneath the Liver Building, but thanks to the vigilance of Lequatre, the Barloworld rider couldn't narrow the gap any further.
Cummings final chance of taking victory came at the final sprint, but there was no stopping Alessandro Petacchi, as he joined Edvald Boasson Hagen on three stage victories by taking the win in Liverpool.
Behind the LPR rider, Lequatre rolled home safely in the bunch, securing him the final Yellow Jersey, and ensuring that Agritubel win The Tour of Britain for the second successive year. Can they make it three in '09?
1 Alessandro Petacchi (Ita) LPR Brakes - Ballan
2 Julian Dean (NZl) Team Garmin - Chipotle
3 Robbie Hunter (RSA) Barloworld