Rob Britton wins 2017 Tour of Utah

Tour of Utah Cycling_1502129533704

Robert Britton celebrates with the yellow leader’s jersey after Stage 3 of the Tour of Utah cycling race, southeast of Salt Lake City, Wednesday, Aug. 2, 2017. (Scott Sommerdorf/The Salt Lake Tribune via AP)

SALT LAKE CITY (ABC4 Sports) – Canadian rider Rob Britton held off all competitors to win the 2017 Tour of Utah, America’s toughest stage race.

Britton took the lead from teammate Sepp Kuss during the uphill time trial on stage 3, then he and his team defended the slim lead through four difficult days that finished in Salt Lake City on Sunday.

“It means a lot to me,” said Britton, who finished in fifth place last year in the Tour of Utah. “I think we were there in other years, but this year has just been phenomenal. I think we’ve had success at just about every race we’ve gone to. Personally, I’ve been knocking on the door for along, long time, and I’ve been passed over for a few things. So this is pretty sweet.”

Gavin Mannion finished in second place, 22 seconds behind Britton, while Serghei Tvetcov finished in third place.

Marco Canola won Stage 7, which looped around downtown Salt Lake City for 73 miles.

Britton said keeping the core group of riders from last year together and making a few new additions pushed the team to the next level.

“Everybody just clicked from day one,” Britton said. “The biggest difference is the work ethic and kind of the sell-out mentality of the guys is phenomenal. And that’s pretty special to have everyone on board to go all in for one goal.”

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