Boassen Hagen wins Tour of Norway
Endura Racing's Russell Downing victorious on final stage
Team Sky's Edvald Boassen Hagen claimed overall victory at his home race, the Tour of Norway, while former Sky man Russell Downing, now riding for Endura Racing, won the final stage.
Boassen Hagen, who won two stages at last year's Tour de France, held a 14-second advantage going into the fifth and final stage and finished sixth in the subsequent bunch sprint.
Simon Clarke (Orica-GreenEDGE) finished second on the stage to earn a six second time bonus but it was not enough to deny Boassen Hagen, who secured the overall victory by eight seconds, with Sky team-mate Lars Petter Nordhaug finishing third to give the podium a distinctly Norwegian feel.
"The support has been really great, with so many people on the roadside throughout the race and I'm so pleased to have been able to win in front of them," said Boassen Hagen.
"It’s a very special race for me to be in and it was a great performance by the whole team to help me take the victory - I'm very grateful to them."
The team had arrived in Norway looking to contest the general classification but a series of crashes and mechanical problems on the second stage effectively removed them from overall contention.
"It's a good reward for the team as we had an unlucky time over the first three days [and] a top five finish was possible before my punctures, but that's bike racing," said Downing.
"Zak gave me an amazing leadout today. Sky were setting up for Edvald and we knew we had to get the jump on them and he did a great job taking me into position."
Endura directeur sportif Alex Sans Vega added: "Finally on last stage all the good work that the guys have done during the week has been paid back. We have had bad luck especially on the second day where we lost all our chances for the GC. We have kept working very hard every day and we got the result we deserved."