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Russian Aleksandr Vlasov pedals during the fifth and final stage between Aigle and Villars during the 75th Tour de Romandie cycling race in Villars-Sur-Ollon, Switzerland, on Sunday May 1, 2022. (Jean-Christophe Bott/Keystone via PA)

Russian Aleksandr Vlasov pedals during the fifth and final stage between Aigle and Villars during the 75th Tour de Romandie cycling race in Villars-Sur-Ollon, Switzerland, on Sunday May 1, 2022. (Jean-Christophe Bott/Keystone via PA)

PA

Russian cyclist Aleksandr Vlasov won the six-day Tour de Romandie on Sunday after going fastest in the final stage of the time trial in the Swiss mountains.

It was a first career World Tour win for the 26-year-old Russian who can continue to compete internationally during Russia’s war with Ukraine as he rides for a German-registered team.

“I gave it my all today. I’m super happy with this result,” said Vlasov, who finished third in the Belgian one-day classic Flèche Wallonne in April.

The International Cycling Union suspended Russian teams two months ago, but Vlasov rides for the Bora-Hansgrohe team. However, the Russian flag is not displayed next to its name on official race graphics.

Vlasov spoke out against the war on social media two days after the UCI sanctions.

“Like many Russians, I just want peace,” Vlasov wrote in the March 3 post on his Instagram account. “I’m not a political person, and normal people like me weren’t asked if we wanted a war.”

On Sunday, Vlasov was 31 seconds faster than Simon Geschke on the 15.8 kilometer (9.8 mile) course to the ski resort of Villars-sur-Ollon. Gino Mäder was five seconds behind in third place.

Vlasov dominated the general classification 50 seconds behind second Mäder. Geschke trailed 55 seconds in third place.

Overnight leader Rohan Dennis – who started the time trial with an 18-second gap to third-placed Vlasov – finished 22nd on the stage and finished eighth overall.

The time trial was decisive after Saturday’s queen stage in the mountains failed to separate the leaders and ended in a sprint within a bunched peloton at the same time.

The Romandie race is a recognized warm-up for Tour de France contenders and has been won in recent years by Chris Froome, Geraint Thomas and Primož Roglič.

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