Australian 2011 Tour de France winner Cadel Evans has won the Criterium International overall, giving his BMC team its first big win of the season.
Evans was part of a quartet of riders that hit the summit finish of Sunday’s final stage of the two-day, three-stage race on Corsica. He placed fourth behind stage winner Pierrick Fedrigo (FDJ-BigMat) to take the overall win after moving into the leader’s jersey thanks to his time trial stage win on Saturday afternoon.
Italian Rinaldo Nocentini (Ag2r) came home in second on the stage, with Sky’s Lars Petter Nordhaug takoing third just ahead of Evans.
Evans topped the final overall classification ahead of Fedrigo at eight seconds and Michael Rogers (Sky) in third, also at eight seconds.
Evans’ win in Criterium International is the first clear sign that the Australian is building his form towards his defence of the Tour de France title in July.
“Yesterday [Saturday’s time trial] was a good indication and a nice confidence boost,” Evans said after the win.
“Sometimes things go well and it all comes together. Up until this point, I had trouble bringing things together. But I knew to keep working at it and things would come together. It’s a good indication, but we have big races still to come.”
Criterium International 2012, stage three: Porto-Vecchio to Col de l’Ospedale, 179 km
1. Pierrick Fedrigo (Fra) FDJ-BigMat in 4-52-34
2. Rinaldo Nocentini (Ita) Ag2r La Mondiale
3. Lars Petter Nordhaug (Nor) Sky
4. Cadel Evans (Aus) BMC Racing at same time
5. Guillaume Levarlet (Fra) Saur-Sojasun at 8 secs
6. Christophe Le Mevel (Fra) Garmin-Barracuda
7. Igor Anton Hernandez (Spa) Euskaltel-Euskadi
8. Michael Rogers (Aus) Sky at same time
9. Jean-Christophe Peraud (Fra) Ag2r La Mondiale at 20 secs
10. Hubert Dupont (Fra) Ag2r La Mondiale at 21 secs
Final overall classification
1. Cadel Evans (Aus) BMC Racing in 7-03-43
2. Pierrick Fedrigo (Fra) FDJ-BigMat at 8 secs
3. Michael Rogers (Aus) Sky Procycling at 8 secs
4. Lars Petter Nordhaug (Nor) Sky at 9 secs
5. Rinaldo Nocentini (Ita) Ag2r La Mondiale
6. Maxime Monfort (Bel) Radioshack-Nissan at 23 secs
7. Igor Anton (Spa) Euskaltel-Euskadi at 38 secs
8. Thomas Lofkvist (Swe) Sky at 42 secs
9. Hubert Dupont (Fra) Ag2r La Mondiale at 47 secs
10. Christophe Riblon (Fra) Ag2r La Mondiale at 1-11
Evans takes control in Criterium International