Date: Monday, 01 April 2013
Posted by: Cycling Southland

A Grade makes the climb on Stage 4 - Photo by Robyn Edie/The Southland TimesScott Thomas rode to an impressive solo victory in this morning's penultimate stage of the 2013 Vital Signs Tour de Lakes. His 41 second victory made it three stage wins on tour, to go with his prologue and individual time trial wins and pushed him within a place of the podium to sit fourth overall just over two and a half minutes off the lead.

Alex McGregor consolidated his grip on yellow, finishing safely in the bunch along with the rest of the top 14 on general classification to mean he will take a 1'50" lead into this afternoon's final 45 kilometre climb to Moke Lake.

B grade will go all the way to the final climb with the top 15 all finishing in the bunch, 28 seconds behind solo stage winner Geoff Taylor. Michael White will take an eight second lead over Glenn Gould into the final stage with Lee Johnstone threatening a further eight seconds in arrears.

No changes in C Grade with the top ten all finishing in a bunch sprint. Alan Strong took the stage win in a photo from Andrew Lienert, who draws within 11 seconds of Tour leader Scott Molina heading into stage six. just 27 seconds separate the top four overall with Dave lawson (third) and Harrison Steedman (fourth) all within touch of the lead.

In contrast, the Women's grade is Linda Villumsen's to lose. She finished in the five-women break this morning along with the rest of the top six and will take a seemingly insurmountable 2'36" lead into this afternoon. Laura Fairweather moved into second spot with Gabrielle Vermunt third at 2'58". Lauren Ellis claimed the stage win in a sprint finish.

Two classifications changed hands on the final stage in last year's Tour. The 45 kilometre stage from Glenorchy to Moke Lake starts at midday and should provide plenty of action, particulalry in B and C grades.

GENERAL CLASSIFICATION - AFTER STAGE 5

  A GRADE     B GRADE  
1 Alex McGregor 7hr16'59" 1 Michael White 7hr48'01"
2 Luke MacPherson @ 1'50" 2 Glenn Gould @ 08"
3 Sam Friend @ 1'56" 3 Lee Johnstone @ 16"
4 Scott Thomas @ 2'33" 4 Geoff Keogh @ 1'04"
5 Tim Rush @ 2'48" 5 Fraser Hewett @ 2'20"
  C GRADE     WOMEN'S GRADE  
Scott Molina 7hr24'27"  Linda Villumsen 7hr38'02" 
2 Andrew Lienert @ 11"  Laura Fairweather @ 2'36" 
Dave Lawson @ 21"  Gabrielle Vermunt @ 2'58" 
Harrison Steedman @ 27"  Hayley Mercer @ 4'41" 
5 Jordan Gilmore @ 48" 5 Elyse Fraser @ 5'37"

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