Roberts delivers in new role for new team

Luke Roberts (Kuota - Senges) with the bike that he used for his winning move in South Africa

Luke Roberts (Kuota - Senges) with the bike that he used for his winning move in South Africa (Image credit: René Penno)

Luke Roberts switched from ProTour team CSC to Team Kuota - Senges at the beginning of the season. And he quickly made use of his new role, which is more of a leader. That the Aussie track star can sprint, he showed on stage 3 of the Giro del Capo. He held off overall leader Christian Pfannberger, of Barloworld, to take a nice win in a sprint of a small group. Belgian Dominique Cornu finished third. Roberts used his performance to move up a few spots in the GC as well, and after three stages lies in seventh, 2'44 behind Pfannberger.

Roberts took the stage on a day that wasn't for weak riders. A hilly terrain and the scoring temperatures of up to 42 degrees Celsius made it a tough affair in the Boland region. A five-man break, including GC hopefuls Félix Rafael Cárdenas (Barloworld) and Ian McLeod (MTN), took of the first climb of the day, but their lead never got past 1'50. When they got caught at km 113, it was Barloworld again, with Robert Hunter.

But at the bottom of the final climb everything was back together and eventually a 12-man group formed, including Pfannberger and Roberts. They stayed away and gained a minute on the field. Roberts, who is still hopeful of making the Australian Olympic pursuit team, used his burst of speed to take the sprint with a comfortable margin.

The race ends on Saturday, with a 5.5-kilometre time trial.

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