Wout van Aert wins Tour of Britain by three seconds as Carlos Rodríguez solos to stage eight victory

Jumbo-Visma rider repeats 2021 success to win the race for a second time

Wout van aert with a bottle of Champagne
(Image credit: Zac Williams/SWpix)

Wout van Aert (Jumbo-Visma) had to dig deep to seal the Tour of Britain title on Sunday afternoon, winning the race for the second time in his career, this time by three seconds. 

The Belgian chased down an attack from Carlos Rodríguez (Ineos Grenadiers) on Caerphilly Mountain in South Wales, closing the gap to the Spaniard, who went on to win the final stage. 

Rodríguez needed to claw back 39 seconds to take the leader's jersey. The 22-year-old ultimately won the stage by 11, with Van Aert sprinting to second place behind him. 

The result meant that the three seconds Van Aert earned on stage five in Felixstowe went on to decide the race. Uno-X's Tobias Halland Johannessen finished second in the general classification, with Q.36.5 Pro Cycling's Damien Howsen in third, both at three seconds. 

Speaking afterwards, Rodríguez said he had to "time trial to the finish" in his bid to overhaul the race lead. 

"We had to try to win the stage and the race," the Ineos Grenadiers rider explained. "Today was the day that suited us the best, so we needed to try to force Jumbo and the other teams to chase to put us in a good position, and that's what I tried." 

Stage eight was neutralised at its midway point following a road traffic incident further up the race route. The peloton idled for over half an hour, before racing restarted and the attacks came on the approach to Caerphilly. 

With around 50km to go, Rodríguez launched a two-pronged move with Stevie Williams (Great Britain) that put Van Aert on the ropes. The duo faltered in their attack initially, but chose to barrel together towards the finish, stretching out a gap of over a minute, and riding two-up for over 30km. 

The Spaniard then attacked alone on the first of two ascents of Caerphilly Mountain, leaving Williams to be swallowed up.

"I just had to go as fast as possible to the finish and in the end, I couldn't get the GC," Rodríguez said. "It was very difficult, but I have to be happy."

Despite some tense moments, Van Aert ended up finishing the day with the same three-second lead he had at the start of it. 

The Belgian's team-mate Olav Kooij, winner of the first four stages, won the points classification at the race, while James Fouché (Bolton Equities Black Spoke) was the King of the Mountains. 

Magnus Sheffield (Ineos Grenadiers) was the best young rider at the race, finishing fourth overall. Mark Donovan (Q36.5 Pro Cycling) was the highest placed Brit in fifth. 

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