Tour success for Tiernan-Locke

  • Last Updated: September 16 2012, 18:50 BST

Jonathan Tiernan-Locke admitted relief was the overriding emotion as he preserved his 18-second lead over the final stage of the Tour of Britain to become the first British winner of the event in 19 years.

  • Jonathan Tiernan-Locke: Tour of Britain winner
  • Mark Cavendish won the final stage in Guildford 

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Endura Racing's Tiernan-Locke kept out of trouble to come home ahead of Australia's Nathan Haas, who rides for Garmin, and Italy's Liquigas rider Damiano Caruso.

The stage was won by Team Sky's Mark Cavendish, who sprinted to victory over Guildford's cobbled streets to send him into the Road World Championships next week in confident mood.

But Tiernan-Locke, who will also compete for Britain in Limburg, Holland, deserved his spot in the limelight today after emulating the home success last achieved by Chris Lillywhite in 1993.

The 27-year-old told BBC Sport: "It's fantastic.

"It has not really sunk in yet. It was a tough day, a lot tougher than we thought. So I feel relief more than anything."

Cavendish was roared to victory by thousands of fans on the sprint to the line in Surrey.

"It was my last day in the (world champion's) rainbow jersey and I wanted to finish it off in style," he said.

"It was absolutely incredible. The amount of people out on the road has been like the Olympic Games.

"I thought I'd been forgotten about and everyone was about sideburns now."

British pair Peter Williams and Kristian House won the sprint and king of the mountains jerseys.

Williams, won the stage's three intermediate sprints to pick up nine points and finish on 45, almost double the amount of the second-placed rider, his Node 4 Giordana team-mate Marcin Bialoblocki.