Richie Porte won his second Tour Down Under on Sunday’s Willunga Hill queen stage, but the surprise was that he didn’t win the stage. After six consecutive years of owning the Willunga Hill stage, Porte found himself passed in the final 100 metres by Brit Matthew Holmes, who was contesting his first WorldTour race.
This is Holmes’ first year with Lotto-Soudal after six seasons with British Continental side Madison-Genesis. Holmes’ victory meant that Lotto-Soudal won half the stages, Caleb Ewan having taken two sprint triumphs.
Second place on the day, Porte easily made up a two-second deficit on reigning champ Daryl Impey, who finished sixth on GC. Third place overnight, Robert Power had a stinker, while well-placed fellows like Simon Yates and George Bennett struggled. Porte’s victory meant that Trek-Segafredo won both the men’s and women’s Tour Down Under.
What's better than this? 👇
— Trek-Segafredo (@TrekSegafredo) January 26, 2020
Like Holmes, Canada’s James Piccoli was also making his WorldTour team debut at the Tour Down Under. Piccoli was 31st on Willunga Hill, but climbed eight positions on GC to 25th. The Canadian was new WorldTour squad Israel Start-up Nation’s top rider in the race.
Porte shared the final podium with Diego Ulissi of UAE-Emirates, the Italian’s second TDU podium, and CCC’s Simon Geschke, a real coup for the German.
Despite not having won any of the sprint stages, Ulissi’s teammate Jasper Philipsen won the points jersey. Ineos saw success in the youth category via Pavel Sivakov, and the team competition.
The WorldTour stays Down Under for the one-day Cadel Evans Great Ocean Road Race next Sunday.
2020 Tour Down Under Stage 6
1) Matthew Holmes (Great Britain/Lotto-Soudal) 3:24:54
2) Richie Porte (Australia/Trek-Segafredo) +0:02
3) Manuele Boaro (Italy/Astana) +0:04
31) James Piccoli (Canada/Israel Start-up Nation) +0:44
60) Guillaume Boivin (Canada/Israel Start-up Nation) +2:15
2020 Tour Down Under GC
1) Richie Porte (Australia/Trek-Segafredo) 20:37:08
2) Diego Ulissi (Italy/UAE-Emirates) +0:25
3) Simon Geschke (Germany/CCC) s.t.
25) James Piccoli (Canada/Israel Start-up Nation) +1:43
95) Guillaume Boivin (Canada/Israel Start-up Nation) +20:33