Caleb Ewan has won the final stage of the UAE Tour. The 26-year-old Australian of Lotto-Soudal was in the sprint the fastest in the final finish of the seven-day race. Ewan finished in the sprint with Sam Bennett, who had already won two stages earlier this week. Tadej Pogacar wrote the final classification to his name.
The German Phil Bauhaus became third in the final stage, Cees Bol fifth. The relief was great with Ewan, who waited for another victory since the Scheldeprijs in October. “This is a relief. We came here for a ride victory, and this was the last chance. I am glad to be heading for Europe with a victory,” said the winner, who has all three big rounds on his programme this season. “I have big plans.”
Van der Poel
Mathieu van der Poel won the first stage in the World Tour competition last Sunday, but for the Dutchman of Alpecin-Fenix it remained. After a positive corontest of a member of the staff, the whole team was taken out of course. Van der Poel flew home on Monday and makes his appearance in Kuurne-Brussel-Kuurne on Sunday.
Pogacar won the leaders jersey in the individual time trial on Monday. The winner of the Tour de France of 2020 was the best day in the third stage, a mountain ride, and held his lead on the Brit Adam Yates on Thursday when it had to be climbed again.
First main goal
“This is an important victory,” said Pogacar, who was second after the Portuguese Rui Costa in 2017 to win his team in the home round. “It was my first main goal of the season and the first time I have seen a home match for the team. This is one of our best results.”
Yates went down Saturday but kept his second place at 35 seconds from Pogacar. Portuguese Joao Almeida became third. David Dekker, who wore the leaders jersey on Monday after Van der Poels departure, took the final victory in the points classification.