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Hunter fades in Oman

Robbie Hunter ended the inaugural Tour of Oman cycle race in 39th spot on the general classification standings after losing ground in the final time trial.

Going into the sixth and final stage, Hunter was lying 15th overall but the 18.6km time trial between Al Jissah and Muscat Corniche took its toll on the South African.

He ended 86th in the trial, 2min 55sec on winner Edvald Boasson Hagen of Norway, the Sky Pro Team rider clocking 25min 58sec.

Switzerland’s Fabian Cancellara was second, 17sec down, with Hunter’s Australian teammate Cameron Meyer third, 45sec back.

There was good news for Hunter’s Garmin-Transitions team as they ended the tour in third spot behind HTC-Columbia and Team Saxo bank, ending just 11sec behind the winning line-up after six days of hard racing.

Hunter’s efforts on the last day saw him drop from 15th to 39th in the overall standings, 2:38 behind tour winner Cancellara who edged out Hagen for the win.

Hunter, now back at his base in Switzerland, says he will be back for next year’s race. “I was chatting to Cancellara in the airport lounge on the way home and we both decided we will be back here.”