Ineos' Australian cyclist Richie Porte fends off Alexey Lutsenko to win Criterium du Dauphine

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Australian Richie Porte won the Criterium du Dauphine on Sunday as Mark Padun of Bahrain Victorious picked up his second stage win.

Recent Ineos recruit Porte, third in last year's Tour de France, went into the eighth and final stage in the overall lead and kept the advantage in the French Alps.

Porte eventually finished 17 seconds ahead of Kazakh Alexey Lutsenko in the overall standings.

For the 36-year-old Porte, it was a sweet victory. He saw a potential victory in the Dauphine slip away on the final day back in 2017.

"This race, having been second here twice and once year losing second in the last kilometre, to finally win it I'm just over the moon," said Porte after the stage.

"All the sacrifices, time away from my wife and two kids, is worth it."

The Australian's Welsh teammate Geraint Thomas, winner of the 2018 Tour, rounded out the podium, 29sec off the pace.

Thomas fell in the descent from Joux-Plane, less than 10km from the finish line in the ski resort of Les Gets, but managed to reel himself back into the group containing the race favourites.

Porte becomes just the second Australian winner of the Criterium, the traditional warm-up event to the Tour which gets underway on June 26, after Phil Anderson in 1985.

He said he is "under no illusions" about his role for his star-studded team at the Tour.

"To win this race just means so so much to me. It's a race I've always enjoyed, and to finally win it at 36 years old is a sweet moment," he said.

Padun won his second stage of the race the day after his victorious climb from La Plagne, the Ukrainian racing ahead on the first slopes of the Joux-Plane, an 11.6km pass with an average incline of 8.5 percent, and never looking like being caught from then on.

The 24-year-old, who won the race's king of the mountains classification, continued his team's good run following an impressive Giro d'Italia in which Damiano Caruso finished second behind Egan Bernal.

Also See: European Cycling Union cancels 2021 Elite Track Championships in Minsk after political fall-out over Belarus' diversion of passenger plane

Tokyo Olympics 2020: Egan Bernal contemplating skipping Games to recover from back pain

Giro d'Italia 2021: Dan Martin makes solo break to win 17th stage, Egan Bernal holds onto lead

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