Tour de Yorkshire 2019: Great Britain’s Chris Lawless claims overall victory

Lawless (in blue) rides with the peloton as it passes through the West Yorkshire village of Haworth

Britain’s Chris Lawless won the Tour de Yorkshire after a superb ride on the final stage from Halifax to Leeds.

Lawless, racing in the blue jersey as the overnight leader, finished right behind stage winner Greg van Avermaet to secure a debut win for Team Ineos.

Wigan’s Lawless, 23, was immediately congratulated by team-mate Chris Froome, who orchestrated the decisive final break on Cote de Otley Chevin.

Team Ineos was only officially launched last week, replacing Team Sky.

“I can’t believe it,” Lawless told ITV 4. “If someone had told me I’d win this race before it started I’d have called them a liar.

“I started losing touch halfway up the Otley Chevin but I knew if I could get back on there was a climb around 5km from the finish that I could get over.

“I knew I could follow Greg van Avermaet when he went. Greg was someone I looked up to when I first started riding so to beat him is special.

“I’ve got to thank the team for backing me because I don’t have a good history on stages like this but they said they’d give me a chance.”

When asked how big a win it is for him personally, he replied: “The biggest.”

More to follow.

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