Elia Viviani rounded off the Tour of Britain by being awarded his third stage win of this year’s race as Edvald Boasson Hagen (MTN-Qhubeka) sealed overall victory.
Team Sky’s Italian sprinter had been beaten by Andre Greipel (Lotto-Soudal) on the London circuit, but the German was deemed to have infringed his rival and relegated to 39th place.
It meant Viviani claimed his third stage win of the week, and Team Sky’s fourth in the eight-stage race, with Juan Jose Lobato (Movistar) promoted to second.
But it was Team Sky’s former rider, Norwegian champion Boasson Hagen, who claimed victory overall – comfortably defending his 13-second overall lead over Wout Poels.
Britain’s Owain Doull (Team WIGGINS) bagged two bonus seconds on the day, at an intermediate sprint, to sneak onto the final podium spot meanwhile – his third place overall complemented by the points jersey.
The stage had passed by relatively as expected beforehand, with Doull doing enough at the first intermediate sprint to leapfrog Rasmus Guldhammer (Cult Energy) overall.
Guldhammer’s British team-mate Russell Downing had won the intermediate sprint but the Danish team were unable to prevent Doull finishing second to bag the vital two bonus seconds.
After the sprint had played out, an eight-man break went clear which featured last year’s winner Dylan van Baarle (Cannondale-Garmin), Danilo Wyss (BMC Racing) and Juraj Sagan (Tinkoff-Saxo) among others.
Their advantage was never allowed to grow to more than 20 seconds however, with Swiss champion Wyss the last man to be caught thanks to the efforts of Team Sky and then Sir Bradley Wiggins.
Lotto-Soudal hit the front under the flamme rouge, with Viviani and Boasson Hagen in the wheels, with the Italian spotting an opportunity as they rounded the final corner.
Making a move up the inside, Viviani looked to pass Greipel only for the German to deviate from his line – which he later insisted had been entirely accidental – and box the Team Sky man against the barriers.
Greipel crossed the line in first place, but second-placed Viviani raised his hand in protest as he held on for second and the race judges backed his version of events to promote him to first.
Boasson Hagen, meanwhile, was promoted to fourth as he became the first man to win the modern Tour of Britain on two separate occasions – but tenth-placed Doull denied him a GC-points double, edging him to victory in the latter by a solitary point.
Nevertheless, with the World Championships next on the agenda, the Norwegian proved he is still a force to be reckoned with a consistent showing over all terrain earned him victory overall.
Tour of Britain 2015: stage eight – result
1) Elia Viviani (ITA) – Team Sky – 1.50.16hrs
2) Juan Jose Lobato (ESP) – Movistar – ST
3) Matteo Trentin (ITA) – Etixx-QuickStep
4) Edvald Boasson Hagen (NOR) – MTN-Qhubeka
5) Jens Debusschere (BEL) – Lotto-Soudal
6) Sondre Holst Enger (NOR) – IAM Cycling
7) Mark Renshaw (AUS) – Etixx-QuickStep
8) Graham Briggs (GBR) – JLT-Condor
9) Ruben Zepuntke (GER) – Cannondale-Garmin
10) Owain Doull (GBR) – Team WIGGINS
1) Edvald Boasson Hagen (NOR) – MTN-Qhubeka – 34.52.52hrs
2) Wout Poels (NED) – Team Sky +13”
3) Owain Doull (GBR) – Team WIGGINS +42”
4) Rasmus Guldhammer (DEN) – Cult Energy +43”
5) Zdenek Stybar (CZE) – Etixx-QuickStep +51”
6) Ruben Fernandez (ESP) – Movistar – ST
7) Steven Kruijswijk (NED) – LottoNL-Jumbo
8) Dylan van Baarle (NED) – Cannondale-Garmin +53”
9) Chris Anker Sorensen (DEN) – Tinkoff-Saxo +59”
10) Xandro Meurisse (BEL) – An Post-Chain Reaction +1.02