Alexander Kristoff says Tour of Britain frustrations sum up his season

Alexander Kristoff finished in the top-five on seven of the eight stages of the Tour of Britain

(Image credit: Getty Images)

Norwegian sprinter Alexander Kristoff has bemoaned his number of near-misses at the Tour of Britain, saying that his results epitomise his season

The 30-year-old finished third on the race's final stage into Cardiff on Sunday, the third time he has recorded that result during the week, to go with three further fourth-placed finishes and a fifth.

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This season, Kristoff also finished in the top-five five times at the Tour de France, fifth at the Tour of Flanders and fourth at Milan-San Remo.

He has, however, won the European Road Race Championships and another eight races this year, including RideLondon, but the Katusha-Alpecin rider's campaign has largely been a series of what ifs.

"For sure this week has been a bit frustrating as I haven't won," he told Cycling Weekly. "Today I think I had the best sprint. OK, [Maximiliano] Richeze beat me but he got a gap at the corner and I still beat [Elia] Viviani and [Fernando] Gaviria, but still only got third place.

"Day by day I have made some mistakes. I know it is difficult to win, but I was hoping to. All the time I have been top-five, except for the time trial.

"I have good shape, I only just wish that I could change a few of the finishes with a victory.

"It was the same in the Classics. I was fifth in Flanders and fourth in San Remo. I have been up there but not won.

"I wish I could have taken one of the missed opportunities. But at least it shows I am up there every day and sooner or later I will get that win again."

With Marcel Kittel swapping Quick-Step Floors for Katusha-Alpecin next season, Kristoff is making way and joining UAE-Team Emirates.

He believes that new surroundings and new team-mates can help him recapture his form of 2014 and 2015, when he won Milan-San Remo and the Tour of Flanders, and was a dominant sprinter in most races.

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"For my motivation, I think the change will be good," he said. "I will be meeting new guys, getting to know new people, and this is going to be exciting.

"I have been at Katusha for six years and they have been six good years. We leave as friends, but it is time for something new as I have been here for most of my career. For me it's a new chapter and we will see how it goes."

Kristoff's next target is his home World Championships in Bergen in two weeks, where he is to be co-leader alongside Edvald Boasson Hagen.

He added: "We are both leaders but I think the course suits Edvald slightly better. I will concentrate on my race, he will concentrate on his, and if we work for each other, we could [win]."

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