Richie Porte wins final stage time trial to take Paris-Nice overall

Australian time trial champion clocked the fastest time to overhaul a 36 second deficit to win the overall, as Geraint Thomas finishes fifth on GC

Team Sky‘s Richie Porte recorded a winning time of 20-23 on the uphill time trial on Col d’Eze, which was enough to see off overnight GC leader Tony Gallopin (Lotto-Soudal) and the challenge of Michal Kwiatkowski (Etixx-QuickStep). The stage win gave Porte the overall victory at Paris-Nice by 30 seconds.

German time trial champion Tony Martin (Etixx-QuickStep) set the early benchmark, powering his way up the 9.6km parcours in a time of 20-52. In the end this was only enough to finish in fourth place, 29 seconds down on Porte.

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Sir Bradley Wiggins, winner on this stage when he took the overall in 2012, opted not to start today’s stage, a decision he wasn’t alone in as a number of others also avoided the wet conditions on Col d’Eze.

Geraint Thomas was 29 seconds down on his Sky teammate on the day, and as a result dropped to fifth on the final general classification. After working hard all week for Porte, and falling hard on the previous day’s stage, the Welshman still put in a combative ride on the day’s stage but it wasn’t enough to get him a podium finish.

Paris-Nice stage seven ITT, Col d’Eze, 9.6km

1. Richie Porte (Aus) Team Sky, 20-23
2. Simon Spilak (Slo) Katusha, at 13 seconds
3. Rui Costa (Por) Lampre-Merida, at 24 seconds
4. Tony Martin (Ger) Etixx-QuickStep, at 29 seconds
5. Michal Kwiatkowski (Pol) Etixx-QuickStep, same time
6. Andrew Talansky (USA) Cannondale-Garmin, at 37 seconds
7. Geraint Thomas (GBr) Team Sky, at 39 seconds
8. Jon Izaguirre (Esp) Movistar, at 50 seconds
9. Tim Wellens (Bel) Lotto-Soudal, at 54 seconds
10. Gorka Izaguirre (Esp) Movistar, at 55 seconds

Richie Porte on his way to victory on Col d'Eze. Photo: Graham Watson

Richie Porte on his way to victory on Col d’Eze. Photo: Graham Watson

Paris-Nice final general classification

1. Richie Porte (Aus) Team Sky, 29-10-41
2. Michal Kwiatkowski (Pol) Etixx-QuickStep, at 30 seconds
3. Simon Spilak (Slo) Katusha, same time
4. Rui Costa (Por) Lampre-Merida, same time
5. Geraint Thomas (GBr) Team Sky, at 41 seconds
6. Tony Gallopin (Fra) Lotto-Soudal, at 1-03
7. Jakob Fuglsang (Den) Astana, at 1-05
8. Rafel Valls (Esp) Lampre-Merida, at 1-24
9. Gorka Izaguirre (Esp) Movistar, at 1-38
10. Tim Wellens (Bel) Lotto-Soudal, at 2-18

Geraint Thomas on stage seven of Paris Nice. Photo: Graham Watson

Geraint Thomas on stage seven of Paris Nice. Photo: Graham Watson

Richie Porte wins Paris-Nice 2015. Photo: Graham Watson

Richie Porte wins Paris-Nice 2015. Photo: Graham Watson

Tony Martin set the early fastest time, but dropped to fourth on the stage. Photo: Graham Watson.

Tony Martin set the early fastest time, but dropped to fourth on the stage. Photo: Graham Watson.

Michal Kwiatkowski on stage seven of Paris-Nice. Photo: Graham Watson

Michal Kwiatkowski on stage seven of Paris-Nice. Photo: Graham Watson