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Tour of Britain: Ethan Hayter retakes race lead with stage five triumph

Ethan Hayter celebrates winning the fifth stage of the Tour of Britain.
Ethan Hayter celebrates winning the fifth stage of the Tour of Britain.

Ethan Hayter reclaimed the Tour of Britain lead after winning a dramatic sprint finish on stage five in Warrington.

The INEOS Grenadiers rider, who won the stage three time trial in Wales on Tuesday, pipped four other riders at the line to push into an eight-second lead in the race standings.

Giacomo Nizzolo, Dan McLay, Luke Lamperti and Mark Cavendish all posted the same time as the Tokyo silver-medalist but were narrowly beaten to the line.

The leading riders had to navigate a crash late on in the race, with Owain Doull (INEOS Grenadiers) slipping on the surface and going down, with several racers falling with him.

Hayter took the stage – 152km between Alderley Park and Warrington – in a time of 3:33:01 and was delighted with his day’s work.

He said: “We kept ourselves in a really good position, in the top 20. We knew it would get hectic as we turned into the tailwind coming into town; it gets messy but the guys were amazing. I just had to finish it off.

“It was like slow-motion. I knew it was slippy going into the last corner and I actually backed off, which probably saved me a bit.

“I think I did a good sprint but I’m guessing everyone got held up by the crash. I had to hit the brakes quite hard.

“I think it was Nizzolo coming up beside me – I could just see a white jersey to my left – and just put it in my biggest gear and went flat out to the line.”

Overall leader INEOS Grenadiers' Ethan Hayter on the podium after stage three of the AJ Bell Tour of Britain.
Overall leader INEOS Grenadiers’ Ethan Hayter on the podium after stage three of the AJ Bell Tour of Britain.

Hayter now holds an eight-second advantage over Belgium’s Wout van Aert, who won stages one and four of the tour earlier in the week, and 19 seconds over Julian Alaphilippe.

The race heads north to Carlisle on Friday, which starts a gruelling 198km trek east to Gateshead and incorporates some steep climbs across the Pennines.

Hayter told ITV4: “I’ll remember this one because it’s my training roads and I’ve lived here for quite a few years now.

“Friday is going to be really hard to control – there’s some big climbs. Quick-Step will probably try tomorrow or on the last day to blow the race apart.

“Van Aert can obviously take quite a few bonus seconds if he sprints but I’ll just have to do the same as I did today.”

Elsewhere in the race, Canyon Dhb SunGod rider Jacob Scott continued his dominance of the King of the Mountains jersey, winning it for the fifth stage in succession. He has also developed a strong grip on the sprints jersey to, holding a 17-point lead over Robin Carpenter heading into the final three events.

Scott said: “I felt really good yesterday and it seemed to feel really good this morning again. Sometimes it just that one hard effort to get you where you need to be.

“There’s a few concoctions (of riders that can catch him) and there’s a certain people I’ll have to watch trying to slide up the road. It’s not over but I’m in a comfortable position I’d say.”

The final stage takes place on Sunday, with the Stonehaven to Aberdeen stage which will see riders finish on the Granite City’s Esplanade.

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