Aussie Earle and team dominate in NZ Classic

GEORGE HEAGNEY
Last updated 05:00 28/01/2013
Nathan Earle
WARWICK SMITH/Fairfax NZ

CLASSIC RIDE: The final stage podium at the NZ Cycle Classic (from left) Alex Frame, Chris Jory, race winner Nathan Earle and Paul Odlin (right).

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The one-man show at the New Zealand Cycle Classic continued as Australian Nathan Earle won the tour in Manawatu after the final stage yesterday.

Earle's Huon Salmon Genesys Wealth Advisers team dominated most facets of the tour and Earle, who had had the leader's jersey for four days and won stage four on Saturday, finished in the peloton yesterday to win the tour in 13 hours 35 minutes 29 seconds.

The final 117km stage near Palmerston North yesterday was a relatively relaxed race on the flats, after a tough climb up Saddle Road on Saturday.

Yesterday, the breakaway group of Malcolm Rudolph, Edward White, Kieran Hambrook and Matt Cronshaw led for most of the race, but they were pulled in just before the finish and Australian Thomas Palmer won in a sprint finish.

Earle had had the leader's jersey since he took it off team-mate Joseph Cooper on day two, and did not look like surrendering it afterwards.

Team-mate Ben Dyball was second, 1min 16sec behind him, and Pat Shaw was sixth, as Genesys held a stranglehold on the tour from day one, when Cooper won the prologue.

No-one got within cooee of Genesys in the team classification either, as they were 16min 9sec in front of the second-placed New Zealand team.

Stage five results: 1. Thomas Palmer (Drapac Professional Cycling) 2h35m48s; 2. Patrick Bevin (New Zealand) ST; 3. Clinton Avery (Trek-Vittoria) ST; 4. Alex Frame (Trek) ST; 5. Joseph Lewis (GPM-Data 3) ST.

Overall standings: 1. Nathan Earle (Genesys) 13h35m29s; 2. Benjamin Dyball (Genesys) at 01m16s; 3. William Walker (Drapac) at 01m19s; 4. Michael Torckler (NZ) at 01m27s; 5. Roman Van Uden (Massey) at 02m07s; 6. Patrick Shaw (Genesys) at 02m13s; 7. Samuel Horgan (Budget Forklifts) at 02m45s; 8. Tim Rush (Tait Communications) at 03m04s; 9. Alex Frame (Trek) at 03m13s; 10. Chris Jory (GPM) at 03m30s; 11. Ryan Wills (NZ) at 04m06s; 12. Matt Cronshaw (Meridian Cycling) at 07m13s; 13. Jason Christie (Armstrong Motor Group) at 09m11s; 14. Nathan Elliot (Seight Custom Cycle Clothing) at 10m48s; 15. Scott Thomas (Tait) at 11m41s; 16. Darren Lapthorne (Drapac) at 11m50s; 17. Dion Smith (Trek) at 12m23s; 18. Saxon Irvine (Seight) at 12m25s; 19. Malcolm Rudolph (Drapac) at 12m29s; 20. Callum Gordon (Team Eleven) at 12m35s; 21. Richard Lawson (Unique Realty) at 12m41s; 22. Morgan Smith (Capital Cycles) at 12m46s; 23. Thomas Ashley (Ricoh) at 12m51s; 24. Alex Wohler (Budget) at 12m56s; 25. Ben McHale (Eleven) at 12m59s.

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