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Spaniard wins Tour of Beijing

October 15, 2013

BEIJING (AP) — Spanish cyclist Benat Intxausti Elorriaga won the Tour of Beijing on Tuesday, with Daniel Martin of Ireland second overall and David Lopez of Spain third.

Intxausti Elorriaga enjoyed an easy final stage on the flat course from Tiananmen Square to the Chinese capital’s iconic National Stadium. The Movistar rider virtually sealed the win with victory in Monday’s fourth stage that earned him a 10-second time bonus.

“I’m very happy with my whole season and above all, to put a finishing touch to the team’s season,” he said. “It’s a very nice win and it gives me encouragement for next season.

“I said yesterday that this victory was the result of work and a good team environment.”

Luka Mezgec of Slovenia won the 117-kilometer (72-mile) final stage for his first victory on the WorldTour, out-sprinting Nacer Bouhanni of France, who’d won the second and third stages.

“I’ve been waiting a really long time for this,” Mezgec said. “The first stage I was really close so I knew I could win here.”

Moreno Hofland of the Netherlands was third in the stage that ended with 12 laps around the stadium known also as the Bird’s Nest.

Two-time tour winner Tony Martin finished sixth overall.

Racing in sunny, cool conditions, a group of four riders opened up a 1-minute, 43-second gap during the final lap segment before being reeled back in. With just 4 kilometers (2 1/2 miles) remaining, the pack caught the last breakaway rider, setting up the sprint finish.

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