TOUR DOWN UNDER SET FOR SPRINT SHOWDOWN
The Tour Down Under stage race in Australia is set for a thrilling finish on Sunday with the overall winner probably being decided in the final sprint.
On Saturday Switzerland’s Martin Elmiger (Ag2r) snatched the leader’s orange jersey from Australia’s Karl Menzies at the finish and now leads by a second. The two are expected to battle it out for final victory in the intermediate sprints and final dash to the line in the 90km criterium stage around the streets of Adelaide.
Stage four was won by Belgium’s Pieter Ghyllebert (Chocolade Jacques) who gave his team its second stage win of the tour by sprinting clear of a group of 24 riders.
Uzbekistan rider Sergey Lagutin (Navigators Insurance) was second and Elmiger pipped South Australian Stuart O'Grady (Team CSC) for third place.
Elmiger managed to avoid the dangerous sprinting to grab the vital two-second time bonus that gave him the lead.
"Tomorrow is the final, it's very close, we will see in the sprints, hopefully I make a good tactic and it's easy for us. We have to ride clever, I can sprint well and I have to try again for the time bonuses. I will fight,” Elminger said.
However Menzies also promised to fight in the sprint.
"For sure we'll give it a go tomorrow One second down and I can sprint ok, so we'll go hammer and tongs. The legs feel good still and I miss those podium girls pecking me on the cheek!” the big Aussie said.
The final sprint will decide who gets the kisses.