2008 Jayco Herald Sun Tour Results - Stage 6
Impey wins for Team Barloworld; O'Grady takes overall race win.
Team Barloworld dominated the last stage of the 2008 Jayco Herald Sun Tour (66 km Melbourne criterium) thanks to an impressive performance by Daryl Impey. Impey outperformed Team Panasonic's Chris Jongeward, whilst Matthew Goss (Team CSC-Saxo Bank) placed third by winning the bunch sprint. Australia's Stuart O'Grady saved his yellow leader's jersey and claimed the final overall victory.
The final stage was dominated by a three-man escape formed early in the morning, containing Team Barloworld's Daryl Impey, Chris Jongeward (Panasonic), and David Kemp (Virgin Blue Australia). Kemp had to give up and was dropped by the peloton with around 4 laps to go. Team CSC-Saxo Bank's riders insisted on pulling back the two survivors, but Impey and Jongeward were able to maintain their lead over the peloton and when they reached the finish line Impey won with a comfortable margin.
"I'm extremely proud of my team," stated Barloworld team Manager Claudio Corti, "as we have demonstrated being a strong squad here in Australia. We achieved two victories and other important placements with Sabido and Froome in every stage. Froome proved that when the road goes up he's a fearsome competitor, as he showed on the Mt Buller. Yes I'm very happy with the whole team" . Also director sportif Valerio Tebaldi was jubilant today: "It was very important for us to win in Melbourne and we succeded. All the guys rode in a perfect way, protecting Impey when he was at the attack and CSC were determinated to chase the two leaders. Well done, I'm really satisfied!"
Team CSC Saxo Bank managed to maintain both first and second place overall.
As it became clear that the criterium stage would not remove the yellow jersey from the Danish team, the focus became the stage victory and the green sprinter's jersey - a jersey worn by Matthew Goss ever since he passed over the yellow jersey to Stuart O'Grady after stage two.
Commenting on his race win, Stuart O'Grady told Roadcycling.com that "It feels bloody fantastic. I didn't want to celebrate anything untill the race was all done. In bike racing anything can happen - that’s the beauty of the sport - but in the end we managed to pull it off. I was expecting a little more attacking in the final stage but everyone has had a pretty tough week with fast racing from start to finish in each stage, so when the boys hit the front of the peloton they were in control."
For O'Grady the race victory is of even greater value because it comes a year after his return to cycling after his horrific crash in the 2007 Tour de France. He made his comeback in the 2007 Herald Sun Tour.
"I came back last year and I was shocked with how good the race was run. I convinced the team to join the race this year and I'm sure all the boys here are happy to have been in this race," O'Grady added.
October 18, 2008: Herald Sun Tour: Melbourne - Melbourne (66 km):