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Ewan beats Bennett and Sagan in People's Choice Classic

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Caleb Ewan celebrates his win

Caleb Ewan celebrates his win
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Simon Gerrans leads the pack

Simon Gerrans leads the pack
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Fans cheers the riders on

Fans cheers the riders on
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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The peloton flies past

The peloton flies past
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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The bunch splits up on the run to the line

The bunch splits up on the run to the line
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Team Sky control the bunch

Team Sky control the bunch
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Geraint Thomas sits at the head of the Team Sky train

Geraint Thomas sits at the head of the Team Sky train
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Peter Sagan was one of the pre-race favourites

Peter Sagan was one of the pre-race favourites
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Esteban Chaves racing in Australia for the first time

Esteban Chaves racing in Australia for the first time
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Caleb Ewan shows of his national champion's jersey

Caleb Ewan shows of his national champion's jersey
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Tom-Jelte Slagterin the peloton

Tom-Jelte Slagterin the peloton
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Bahrain-Merida show off their colours for the first time in a race

Bahrain-Merida show off their colours for the first time in a race
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Ben O'Connor makes a break for it

Ben O'Connor makes a break for it
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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The Dimension Data riders seem happy in the bunch

The Dimension Data riders seem happy in the bunch
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Francisco Ventoso racing in BMC colours for the first time

Francisco Ventoso racing in BMC colours for the first time
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Orica-Scott take control

Orica-Scott take control
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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The Orica-Scott team relax before the start

The Orica-Scott team relax before the start
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Tyler Farrar chats with Ben O'Connor

Tyler Farrar chats with Ben O'Connor
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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A big smile Adam Hansen

A big smile Adam Hansen
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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The riders race into the sunset

The riders race into the sunset
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Jack Bauer racing for Quick-Step floors this season

Jack Bauer racing for Quick-Step floors this season
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Jan Bakelandts (AG2R La Mondiale)

Jan Bakelandts (AG2R La Mondiale)
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Peter Sagan is calm and relaxed as he waits for the start

Peter Sagan is calm and relaxed as he waits for the start
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Ben O'Connor escapes with Will Clarke

Ben O'Connor escapes with Will Clarke
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Caleb Ewan discusses his race victory

Caleb Ewan discusses his race victory
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Caleb Ewan surrounded by press at the finish

Caleb Ewan surrounded by press at the finish
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Will Clarke took one of the intermediate sprints

Will Clarke took one of the intermediate sprints
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Ben O'Connor on stage after a good day out

Ben O'Connor on stage after a good day out
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Geraint Thomas adds 500 Australian dollars to the coffers for winning a prime

Geraint Thomas adds 500 Australian dollars to the coffers for winning a prime
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Domenico Pozzovivo finishes

Domenico Pozzovivo finishes
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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The Katusha team relaxes before the start

The Katusha team relaxes before the start
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Rohan Dennis signs autographs

Rohan Dennis signs autographs
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Miles Scotson looking relaxed

Miles Scotson looking relaxed
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Former teammates Richie Porte and Ben Swift catch up

Former teammates Richie Porte and Ben Swift catch up
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Domenico Pozzovivo awaits the start

Domenico Pozzovivo awaits the start
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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The riders begin the race

The riders begin the race
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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The bunch passes through a corner

The bunch passes through a corner
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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The media attention on Caleb Ewan and Esteban Chaves, with women's race leader Amanda Spratt in the background

The media attention on Caleb Ewan and Esteban Chaves, with women's race leader Amanda Spratt in the background
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Full steam ahead as Caleb Ewan leads the bunch sprint

Full steam ahead as Caleb Ewan leads the bunch sprint
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Calm and collected, Caleb Ewan looks over his shoulder to see where his rivals are

Calm and collected, Caleb Ewan looks over his shoulder to see where his rivals are
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Caleb Ewan takes the dash to the line

Caleb Ewan takes the dash to the line
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Caleb Ewan won the People's Choice Classic for the second consecutive time

Caleb Ewan won the People's Choice Classic for the second consecutive time
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Caleb Ewan on the podium

Caleb Ewan on the podium
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)

Caleb Ewan (Orica-Scott) beat Sam Bennett and world champion Peter Sagan to the line to win the People’s Choice Classic on Sunday.

The national criterium champion held off a late charge from Bennett, after a perfect leadout from his Orica-Scott teammates in the closing stages of the 50.6 kilometre race in Adelaide.

Ewan came into the race as the main favourite, and on their home roads Orica rode a faultless race. They allowed Dimension Data’s Ben O’Connor to break away during the opening laps and then rode tempo for the majority of the race.

O’Connor built up a lead of 40 seconds during the 22-lap race but the youngster began to tighten up in the final five laps, just as the sprint trains began to organise their chase.

Katusha, Team Sky, Sunweb and Sagan’s Bora Hansgrohe all attempted to establish control in the closing stages as O’Connor sat up but Orica’s well-oiled machine was simply too strong.

Simon Gerrans, Darly Impey, Luke Durbridge and even Colombian climber Esteban Chaves took turns on the front but it was new recruit Roger Kluge who brought Ewan into the final 200 meters.

The German joined the team in the winter but Orica-Scott has tracked his progression since last May when he won a stage in the Giro d’Italia. He was just one of three new signings made this season by the Australian team but despite only arriving in Adelaide a few days ago, he instantly made a difference.

While Sagan and Bennett looked threatening they appeared to lack the same cohesion and, despite a strong finish from Bennett, the Irishman was left with too much to do in the closing meters.

Ahead of the Tour Down Under, which starts on Tuesday the People’s Choice Classic threw up few surprises in the end.

O’Connor put in a valiant ride and his teammate Nathan Haas looked in decent form with a couple of early attacks. Edward Theuns (Trek Segafredo) finished a creditable fifth after returning from back surgery. Niccolo Bonifazio took fourth in Bahrain Merida’s first outing.

Full Results

#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Caleb Ewan (Aus) Orica-Scott1:03:41
2Sam Bennett (Irl) Bora-Hansgrohe
3Peter Sagan (Svk) Bora-Hansgrohe
4Niccolo Bonifazio (Ita) Bahrain-Merida
5Edward Theuns (Bel) Trek-Segafredo
6Mark Renshaw (Aus) Dimension Data
7Sean De Bie (Bel) Lotto Soudal
8Baptiste Planckaert (Bel) Katusha-Alpecin
9Patrick Bevin (NZl) Cannondale-Drapac
10Jasha Sutterlin (Ger) Movistar Team
11Carlos Barbero (Spa) Movistar Team
12Robert Wagner (Ger) Team LottoNL-Jumbo
13Matteo Montaguti (Ita) AG2R La Mondiale
14Nikias Arndt (Ger) Team Sunweb
15Roger Kluge (Ger) Orica-Scott
16Danny Van Poppel (Ned) Team Sky
17Miles Scotson (Aus) BMC Racing Team
18Marko Kump (Slo) Team UAE Abu Dhabi
19Chun-Kai Feng (Tpe) Bahrain-Merida
20Martin Velits (Svk) Quick-Step Floors
21Sven Bystrom (Nor) Katusha-Alpecin
22Tom Van Asbroeck (Bel) Cannondale-Drapac
23Julien Berard (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale
24Michael Valgren DNK Astana Pro Team
25Laurens De Vreese (Bel) Astana Pro Team0:00:08
26Janez Brajkovic (Slo) Bahrain-Merida
26Clement Chevrier (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale
28Daryl Impey (RSA) Orica-Scott
29Petr Vakoc (Cze) Quick-Step Floors
30Matthieu Ladagnous (Fra) FDJ
31Danilo Wyss (Swi) BMC Racing Team
32Lucas Hamilton (Aus) UniSA-Australia
33Paul Martens (Ger) Team LottoNL-Jumbo
34Jay Mccarthy (Aus) Bora-Hansgrohe
35Francois Bidard (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale
36Ruben Guerreiro (Por) Trek-Segafredo
37Ondrej Cink (Cze) Bahrain-Merida
38Ben Swift (GBr) Team UAE Abu Dhabi
39Alexey Vermeulen (USA) Team LottoNL-Jumbo
40Sebastian Henao (Col) Team Sky
41Jarlinson Pantano (Col) Trek-Segafredo
42Sergio Henao (Col) Team Sky
43Jacques Janse Van Rensburg (RSA) Dimension Data
44Koen De Kort (Ned) Trek-Segafredo
45Vegard Laengen (Nor) Team UAE Abu Dhabi
46Esteban Chaves (Col) Orica-Scott
47Jai Hindley (Aus) UniSA-Australia0:00:14
48Samuel Jenner (Aus) UniSA-Australia
49Artyom Zakharov (Kaz) Astana Pro Team
50Diego Ulissi (Ita) Team UAE Abu Dhabi
51Adam Hansen (Aus) Lotto Soudal
52Christopher Hamilton (Aus) Team Sunweb
53Ben Gastauer (Lux) AG2R La Mondiale
54Eros Capecchi (Ita) Quick-Step Floors
55Domenico Pozzovivo (Ita) AG2R La Mondiale
56Jeremy Maison (Fra) FDJ
57Gregor Muhlberger (Aut) Bora-Hansgrohe
58Lukas Postleberger (Aut) Bora-Hansgrohe
59Gorka Izagirre (Spa) Movistar Team
60Simon Gerrans (Aus) Orica-Scott
61Francisco Ventoso (Spa) BMC Racing Team
62Paolo Tiralongo (Ita) Astana Pro Team0:00:19
63Michael Woods (Can) Cannondale-Drapac0:00:34
64Yukiya Arashiro (Jpn) Bahrain-Merida0:00:40
65Jack Bauer (NZl) Quick-Step Floors
66Phil Bauhaus (Ger) Team Sunweb
67Rudiger Selig (Ger) Bora-Hansgrohe0:00:47
68Tiago Machado (Por) Katusha-Alpecin0:00:51
69Giovanni Visconti (Ita) Bahrain-Merida
70Michael Kolar (Svk) Bora-Hansgrohe0:00:53
71Enrico Battaglin (Ita) Team LottoNL-Jumbo
72Victor De La Parte (Spa) Movistar Team0:00:56
73Marc Soler (Col) Movistar Team
74Arnaud Courteille (Fra) FDJ
75Odd Christian Eiking (Nor) FDJ
76Lorrenzo Manzin (Fra) FDJ
77Jhonatan Restrepo (Col) Katusha-Alpecin
78Robert Gesink (Ned) Team LottoNL-Jumbo
79Luis Leon Sanchez Gil (Spa) Astana Pro Team
80Michael Storer (Aus) UniSA-Australia
81Enric Mas Nicolau (Spa) Quick-Step Floors
82Angel Vicioso (Spa) Katusha-Alpecin
83Maurits Lammertink (Ned) Katusha-Alpecin
84Thomas De Gendt (Bel) Lotto Soudal
85Lars Bak (Den) Lotto Soudal
86Laurent Didier (Lux) Trek-Segafredo
87Sander Armee (Bel) Lotto Soudal
88Lennard Hofstede (Ned) Team Sunweb
89Tsgabu Grmay (Eth) Bahrain-Merida
90Tom-Jelte Slagter (Ned) Cannondale-Drapac
91Amael Moinard (Fra) BMC Racing Team
92Brendan Canty (Aus) Cannondale-Drapac
93Jan Bakelants (Bel) AG2R La Mondiale
94Peter Stetina (USA) Trek-Segafredo
95Richie Porte (Aus) BMC Racing Team
96Manuele Mori (Ita) Team UAE Abu Dhabi
97Marco Marcato (Ita) Team UAE Abu Dhabi
98James Shaw (GBr) Lotto Soudal
99Rafael Valls (Spa) Lotto Soudal
100Johannes Frohlinger (Ger) Team Sunweb
101Koen Bouwman (Ned) Team LottoNL-Jumbo0:01:05
102Bert-Jan Lindeman (Ned) Team LottoNL-Jumbo
103Mads Pedersen (Den) Trek-Segafredo
104Gianluca Brambilla (Ita) Quick-Step Floors
105Damiano Caruso (Ita) BMC Racing Team
106Oscar Gatto (Ita) Astana Pro Team
107Tyler Farrar (USA) Dimension Data
108Rohan Dennis (Aus) BMC Racing Team
109Cameron Meyer (Aus) UniSA-Australia
110Nathan Earle (Aus) UniSA-Australia
111Callum Scotson (Aus) UniSA-Australia
112Jaco Venter (RSA) Dimension Data0:01:12
113Ben O'connor (Aus) Dimension Data
114Dries Devenyns (Bel) Quick-Step Floors
115Anthony Roux (Fra) FDJ
116Lachlan Morton (Aus) Dimension Data
117Johan Le Bon (Fra) FDJ
118Jose Goncalves (Por) Katusha-Alpecin
119Jose Herrada (Spa) Movistar Team
120Jesus Herrada (Spa) Movistar Team
121Will Clarke (Aus) Cannondale-Drapac
122Damien Howson (Aus) Orica-Scott0:01:16
123Louis Meintjes (RSA) Team UAE Abu Dhabi
124Nathan Haas (Aus) Dimension Data
125Luke Rowe (GBr) Team Sky0:01:19
126Luke Durbridge (Aus) Orica-Scott0:01:25
127Alex Howes (USA) Cannondale-Drapac0:01:37
128Geraint Thomas (GBr) Team Sky0:01:40
DNFWilco Keldermann (Ned) Team Sunweb
DNFSimon Geschke (Ger) Team Sunweb
DNFIan Stannard (GBr) Team Sky
DNSOwain Doull (GBr) Team Sky
DNSMatti Breschel (Dnk) Astana Pro Team

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