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Rui Costa wraps up Abu Dhabi Tour victory

Josh Cunningham
27 Feb 2017

Rui Costa wins queen stage to take overall honours, while Caleb Ewan sprints to final stage glory

Rui Costa (UAE Team Emirates) took a 'home' win at the weekend by winning the Abu Dhabi Tour for the Emirati team. His victory on the queen stage of the tour, atop the Jebel Hafeet summit finish, was enough to secure him the overall GC win ahead of Ilnur Zakarin (Katusha Alpecin) and Tom Dumoulin (Team Sunweb).

The race was billed to be a duel between Grand Tour-winning names like Nairo Quintana (Movistar), Vincenzo Nibali (Bahrain-Merida) and Alberto Contador (Trek-Segafredo), but it was Costa and Zakarin who escaped the bunch early and managed to hang on to their advantage to the finish. Tom Dumoulin and Bauke Mollema (Trek-Segafredo) eventually managed to break away as well, but were not able to make it back up to the leaders. 

Costa, the 2013 World Champion, has had a quiet few years, but after a stage victory at the Tour de San Juan in January and second overall at the Tour of Oman, the Portuguese is having a blinding start to 2017. 

The final stage was a 28-lap circuit race around the Abu Dhabi Formula 1 circuit, held in very wet conditions, and it was Caleb Ewan (Orica-BikeExchange) who won out ahead of Mark Cavendish and Andre Greipel, eventually getting his stage win after crashing in stage 1 and being pipped to the line while celebrating on stage 2. 

The victory is the young Australian's 5th victory of the 2017, with each of them coming in WorldTour races too. 

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