Adam Yates takes Tour of Turkey lead with superb solo victory on stage 6 summit finish
Last Updated: 03/05/14 12:34pm
Britain’s Adam Yates took the lead of the Tour of Turkey by climbing to a superb solo victory on stage six’s summit finish in Selcuk.
The 21-year-old Orica-GreenEdge rider surged clear of the field with just over 1km remaining and hung on to claim a breakthrough first win as a professional.
He started the day six seconds behind race leader Rein Taaramae but crossed the line seven seconds ahead of his Estonian rival, meaning he now rises to the top of the general classification and will take a one-second advantage into Saturday’s penultimate stage.
His lead might have been even greater had he not stopped pedalling and started celebrating just before the line.
It was nevertheless an outstanding performance from the Bury-born rider, who had put himself into overall contention earlier in the race by finishing second behind Taaramae on stage three.
He is now favourite to claim a maiden stage-race victory on Sunday, although his lead is so slender that every metre will be keenly fought for.
Stage seven looks set to end in a sprint, while the eighth and final stage takes place on a rolling and almost certainly decisive circuit in Istanbul.
Yates said: “It hasn’t sunk in yet. We have two more days yet to try to seal up the overall. I guess if it all goes to plan and we take the general classification, it will really mean something after that. For now, I’m happy with the result. The guys rode well all day.”
Stage six's final climb to Selcuk was just over 4km long and only around 15 riders were left at the head of the race going into the final 1.5km.
Taaramae, of Cofidis, was looking to defend his lead and had stuck to Yates's rear wheel for much of the ascent, but when the Briton attacked just before the flamme rouge, he had no response.
Yates's displays in Turkey have been the latest excellent showings of an impressive debut season. In January he won the best young rider classification at the mountainous Tour de San Luis in Argentina.
He agreed to join Orica-GreenEdge last autumn after finishing second overall at the 2013 Tour de l'Avenir, which is seen as the premier proving ground for up-and-coming young riders.
Stage six result
1 Adam Yates (GB) Orica-GreenEdge, 4:11:46
2 Davide Formolo (Ita) Cannondale, +2sec
3 Davide Rebellin (Ita) CCC Polsat Polkowice, same time
4 Rein Taaramae (Est) Cofidis, +7
5 Kristijan Durasek (Cro) Lampre-Merida, st
6 Juan Jose Cobo (Spa) Torku Sekerspor, st
7 Romain Hardy (Fra) Cofidis, st
8 Luis Leon Sanchez (Spa) Caja Rural-Seguros RGA, +15
9 Adam Hansen (Aus) Lotto Belisol, +17
10 Javier Mejias Leal (Spa) Novo Nordisk, +26
1 Adam Yates (GB) Orica-GreenEdge, 24:46:57
2 Rein Taaramae (Est) Cofidis, +1sec
3 Romain Hardy (Fra) Cofidis, +39
4 Davide Formolo (Ita) Cannondale, +40
5 Davide Rebellin (Ita) CCC Polsat Polkowice, +44
6 Juan Jose Cobo (Spa) Torku Sekerspor, +45
7 Kristijan Durasek (Cro) Lampre-Merida, st
8 Luis Leon Sanchez (Spa) Caja Rural-Seguros RGA, +47
9 Adam Hansen (Aus) Lotto Belisol, +54
10 Enrico Barbin (Ita) Bardiani-CSF, +1:04