Posted by Editoress on 08/3/16
Lachlan Morton (Jelly Belly Cycling Team presented by MAXXIS) powered away from his two break mates for a thrilling win on Stage 3 presented by America First Credit Union today at the Larry H. Miller Tour of Utah. The victory in downtown Payson put the 24-year-old in the Larry H. Miller Group of Companies race leader jersey. Morton covered the 119-mile course, the longest of the week which began in Richfield, in four hours and 24 minutes.
Morton attacked on the steep, lower slopes of Mount Nebo, the southernmost and highest mountain in the Wasatch Range of Utah. He was soon joined by Americans Adrien Costa (Axeon Hagens Berman) and Andrew Talansky (Cannondale-Drapac Pro Cycling Team). The trio worked well together to hold off hard-changing chase groups over the only Utah Office of Tourism King of the Mountain climb of the day that crested to 9,300 feet above sea level. An exhilarating 22-mile descent into Payson led to a three-man showdown.
“I came here wanting to do a good race. As a domestic rider, this race is as big as it gets. Everyone is really motivated. I won this stage (Richfield to Payson) last time, so I knew it really well. This morning we just said, ‘Let’s go for it’. We hadn’t really planned for it before today. It all worked out pretty much how we wanted it to, which rarely happens,” said Morton about his Jelly Belly Team strategy. Morton soloed to victory on this same stage 3 at the 2013 Tour of Utah.
“The team came here with one big goal, and that was to help me out. So far, my team has ridden above themselves. It’s going to be exciting,” added Morton on the team plans to defend the overall leader’s jersey.
Runner-up Costa, the youngest rider in the race at 18 years of age, takes over the Subaru Best Young Rider classification jersey and the Utah Office of Tourism King of the Mountain jersey. Talansky finished third on Stage 3 presented by America First Credit Union.
“Honestly I was not expecting to be climbing with these guys. It was really fun,” said Costa, who turns 19 on Aug. 19. “I may have done too much work in the beginning, something I have to learn about. Lachlan, at the end, showed his experience. Every day I am learning, hopefully getting stronger.”
The win gives Morton a seven-second General Classification (G.C.) lead over Costa and nine seconds on Talansky. BMC Racing Team’s Darwin Atapuma Hurtado is fourth and Taylor “T.J.” Eisenhart, moves from 75th to seventh overall. American Robin Carpenter (Holowesko | Citadel Racing Team presented by Hincapie Sportswear) dropped from first to eighth overall.
“This race is grown a lot since 2009,” said Talansky about the first time he raced at the Tour of Utah. Since then, he has raced in seven Grand Tours. “It has been fun being out here with Adrien and Lachlan. Moves like today so far from the finish rarely work. In a race like this, it actually can. It was fun.”
Simon Pellaud (IAM Cycling), the last rider from the early breakaway to be reeled in after 80 miles in the saddle, was awarded the Larry H. Miller Dealerships Most Aggressive Rider jersey. American Robin Carpenter (Holowesko | Citadel Racing Team presented by Hincapie Sportswear) retained the Utah Sports Commission Sprint jersey. Talansky was voted America First Credit Union Fan Favorite for Stage 3, in the category of Best Climber.
Tour of Utah