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New Zealander Aaron Gate wins road race and claims his fourth medal at Commonwealth Games

New Zealand's Aaron Gate took his fourth gold medal at the. 2022 Commonwealth Games in Birmingham, using his fast sprint finish to win the men’s road race after a tactical battle and an aggressive race between the leading nations.

Geraint Thomas (Wales) made a late solo attack with less than two kilometres to go but he was pulled back by the England and Australian riders, which in turn helped lead out Gate in the sprint to the line.

He beat South Africa's Daryl Impey, while Scotland's Finn Crockett won the bronze medal.

Northern Ireland's Matthew Teggart finished fourth, England's Fred Wright was fifth and Ben Turner was seventh, while Thomas crossed the line seventh after his late attack.

Last week Gate won gold in the individual pursuit, team pursuit and points race on the track. Now he has added a road race gold to his palmares.

“It's hard to believe,” Gate said in shock. “I put my arms up and I didn't know if it had really happened or not. I'm kind of lost for words.”

The 160km circuit race in Warwick saw Mark Cavendish, Luke Plapp and former Tour de France winner Thomas in the peloton representing the Isle of Man, Australia and Wales, respectively.

Caleb Ewan and Rohan Dennis were both absent from the Australian team, Dennis a late withdrawal after being taken to hospital on Saturday for checks.

The small squads sizes and the largely-flat and fast course made it difficult to control the attacks. A key move of 15 riders formed with 110km to go, with Gate, Thomas, Plapp and Impey, but without Cavendish.

Also there were England's Fred Wright, Sam Watson and Ben Turner, Scotland's Finn Crockett and Sean Flynn, Northern Ireland's Matthew Teggart, the Isle of Man's Ben Swift and Guernsey's Sam Culverwell.

They opened a two-minute lead and the riders worked well together.

However the move split and changed under the attacks in the final 50km with Plapp the first to accelerate away. The young Australian and Ineos Grenadiers rider was joined by Sam Watson of England and Morné Van Niekerk of South Africa but then quickly caught.

With 35km to go Watson had another go and Impey, Gate and Matthew Teggart (Northern Ireland) joined him to form an attack and gain 30 seconds. However Thomas closed it down as attacks were followed by counter-moves and chases.

Wright made his move with Culverwell with 6km to go as England again played on their superiority in numbers. Van Niekerk made a huge effort to help Impey and the attack was also caught.

A small group sprint seemed likely but then Thomas played his final card with a solo attack with 1.7km to go. The 2018 Tour de France winner got a gap but Plapp sacrificed his chances to close him down and effectively lead out the sprint for the small group of survivors.

Wright hit the front first in the sprint but Gate used his track skills to time his effort well. He came down the centre of the road to win with his arm in the air.

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