Simon Yates wins Tour of Alps before the Giro d'Italia
Simon Yates said it was "fantastic" to win the on Friday to claim his first victory of the season, ahead of next month's Italian Grand Tour
Former Vuelta a Espana champion Yates, 28, finished 58 seconds ahead of Spaniard Pello Bilbao and Russian Aleksandr Vlasov in third.
"It feels really fantastic. The team did a great job today, controlled it at the start, rode all day, then in final they were fantastic," Bike Exchange's Yates said.
"It was a short day and there wasn't so much action from the General Classification but it was still a hard day, with a lot of stress, and with a descent to the finish it's always nervous," he added.
Yates, who claimed the Tirreno-Adriatico last year, will now turn his focus to the Giro, which starts on May 8 in Turin.
Four-time former winner Chris Froome struggled all week in the mountains between Italy and Austria finishing in 94th place, more than 41 minutes behind Yates.
Austrian Felix Grossschartner won the fifth and final stage between Valle del Chiese and Riva del Garda after a solo attack.
The last stage of the Tour of the Alps took the riders to Lake Garda today. Once again, the course was quite hilly, and the peloton had to cover 121 km to reach the line in Riva del Garda.
It was also the last chance for BORA – hansgrohe to grab a stage win and therefore, Felix Großschartner and Matteo Fabbro were on the attack again. But as Matteo was just under four minutes down in GC, the bunch once again didn’t allow the group to gain more than three minutes advantage.
As a result, eight riders from the original 16 made a move with 45 km remaining and Felix was also part of that new leading group. On the last climb Großschartner went all in to drop all of his former seven-man breakaway companions in the final kilometre to take a solo victory in Riva del Garda, after just missing out earlier in the week.
"I was second on the third stage so I'm super happy today I can take the victory for the team," Grossschartner said, "It's always great to win, every pro cyclist knows it's really hard to win a race when there are 160 guys fighting for the victory. It's always special."
VIDEO: 2021 Tour of the Alps Stage 5 Highlights
2021 Tour of the Alps GC after Stage 5
1 Simon Yates (GBr) Team BikeExchange 18:36:06
2 Pello Bilbao Lopez De Armentia (Spa) Bahrain Victorious 0:00:58
3 Aleksandr Vlasov (Rus) Astana-Premier Tech 0:01:06
4 Jefferson Cepeda Ortiz (Ecu) Androni Giocattoli -Sidermec 0:02:25
5 Hugh Carthy (GBr) EF Education-Nippo 0:02:37
6 Pavel Sivakov (Rus) Ineos Grenadiers 0:02:44
7 Nairo Quintana (Col) Team Arkea-Samsic 0:02:54
8 Ruben Guerreiro (Por) EF Education-Nippo 0:03:12
9 Romain Bardet (Fra) Team DSM
10 Nicholas Schultz (Aus) Team BikeExchange 0:03:36
2021 Tour of the Alps Stage 5 Top 10
1 Felix Grossschartner (Aut) Bora-Hansgrohe 3:03:38
2 Nicolas Roche (Irl) Team DSM 0:00:34
3 Alessandro De Marchi (Ita) Israel Start-up Nation
4 Gianni Moscon (Ita) Ineos Grenadiers 0:00:40
5 Alejandro Osorio Carvajal (Col) Caja Rural-Seguros RGA
6 Romain Bardet (Fra) Team DSM
7 Luis Leon Sanchez (Spa) Astana-Premier Tech
8 Ruben Guerreiro (Por) EF Education-Nippo
9 Mark Padun (Ukr) Bahrain Victorious
10 Matteo Fabbro (Ita) Bora-Hansgrohe