British rider Adam Yates recorded the biggest triumph of his career by winning the Volta a Catalunya on Sunday
Bury-born Yates won the overall standings in a first-ever one-two-three for Team Ineos, formerly Team Sky. His teammates Richie Porte and Geraint Thomas completed the podium, respectively 45 and 49 seconds off the lead.
“It was a perfect team performance,” said Yates, 28, the first British Volta a Catalunya winner since Robert Millar in 1985.
British rider Adam Yates won the general classification of the Volta a Catalunya race
It is certainly Yates’ biggest career victory – he described it as a “perfect team performance”
“And it’s a really special day today. We came here with big ambitions, but getting the top three is way beyond our expectations.
His fellow Lancaster Hugh Carthy finished eighth, 1 min 20 sec behind, with Yates’ twin brother Simon 1 min 32 sec from the lead.
Yates took the lead in stage three on Wednesday, after a tough climb on the Vallter 2000. He finished the time trial and climbed Port Aine well on stage four.
The result marks the first-ever one-two-three for Team Ineos (formerly known as Team Sky)
He kept a considerable lead until the last day, which ended at Parc de Montjuic in Barcelona, with Thomas de Gendt of Lotto Soudal winning the final stage.
But the only real threat to his quest for the green and white jersey came from his own teammates, despite a fine effort from fourth Alejandro Valverde.
This is his first victory in the general classification for Ineos, which he joined this winter. “Winning so early in the season is a really special feeling,” he added.
Former Tour de France winner Chris Froome had a nightmarish race and finished 53 minutes behind
Welshman Thomas, who will be looking to emulate his 2018 Tour de France victory this summer, said: “It was good to be back on a podium.
“To be honest, it was never really a goal at the start of the year to get this good this early.”
Chris Froome, who was riding for the new Israel Start-Up Nation team and still recovering from a series of injuries, had a nightmarish run and finished 53 minutes from the lead.