Porte primed for Tour Down Under title after stunning stage five win – Bike Magazine Australia

Richie Porte proved exactly why he is the king of Willunga Hill to put himself on the brink of claiming the Tour Down Under title.

Tasmanian Porte blasted his rivals on the final climb to the finish on the penultimate stage of the race.

It was his fourth victory up Willunga and his superb performance gave him a virtually insurmountable 48 second advantage over Esteban Chaves in the General Classification with just one stage to go.

Porte was TDU runner-up in both 2015 and 2016, but is now set to claim the title when the race finishes in the centre of Adelaide on Sunday afternoon.

“That hurt a lot more than the other three wins here,” he admitted afterwards.

“I went from quite long way out, but it was unbelievable team-work from the guys and I am just happy to finish it off.

“I’m happy where I am at the moment. I put some time into the other guys and maybe that makes tomorrow’s final stage a bit more relaxed for us.”

Strong climbers such as Sergio Henao and Chaves had no answer to Porte as he attacked about 2km from the line.

The rest of the peloton was also blown apart, disrupting the General Classification as a result, with Chaves moving into second place and Nathan Haas now third.

Earlier, four riders – Jeremy Maison, Will Clarke, Jack Bauer and Thomas De Gendt – built up a three minute lead over the field with just 30km to go.

That would have been enough for New Zealander Bauer to take over as the leader and he was still in pole position after the first climb up Willunga Hill, but then got hauled in at the foot of the second ascent before Porte’s amazing attack.

Porte now has just one more stage to negotiate – Sunday’s 90km criterium in central Adelaide – before he can claim the Tour Down Under title.