QUEBEC — Rigoberto Uran of Colombia broke from the pack with 500 meters to go and held on to win the Grand Prix Cycliste de Quebec on Friday afternoon.
Australian Michael Matthews of the Orica-GreenEdge team was second ahead of Norway’s Alexander Kristoff of Katusha.
Uran, of the Etixx-Quickstep team, posted his first win at the UCI WorldTour event after finishing third in 2013. He won a silver medal at the 2012 Olympics and finished second twice at the Giro d’Italia.
“We had a very strong team at the start with (defending world champion) Michal Kwiatkowski or Julian Alaphilippe and our plan was to get to the last kilometre and go from there,” said Uran. “That’s what we did.
“It worked and I’m very happy. It was of course an advantage to have so may contenders in the team.”
Cannondale-Garmin ace Ryder Hesjedal of Victoria was the top Canadian in 16th place, while the Silber Pro team’s Ryan Roth of Kitchener, Ont., was named best climber.
Roth and Adam de Vos of Victoria were among a group of six riders who escaped early and built a lead of over nine minutes before they were hauled in by the peleton.
Uran won in five hours nine minutes 46 seconds. A total of 136 riders completed the 16 laps of a hilly 12.6-kilometre circuit in the centre of Quebec City.
“Second place was a good result today, I had good legs,” said Matthews.
Kristoff has had a strong season and sits second in the UCI WorldTour standings behind Alejandro Valverde, who is currently riding in the Tour of Spain.
“I was hoping to get the win but I was beaten in the sprint,” said Kristoff. “Now I hope to fight for a win on Sunday.”
A second one-day race will be held Sunday in Montreal.
The Canadian Press