Calgary

Rohan Dennis, 23, wins Tour of Alberta

Rohan Dennis, a 23-year-old Australian cyclist, has won the first-ever Tour of Alberta, after a gruelling 900-kilometre race over five stages.

Ryan Anderson was top Canadian finisher in 8th place

Australia's Rohan Dennis, centre with yellow jersey, climbs a hill with the rest of the pack during stage four of the Tour of Alberta cycling race in Black Diamond, Alta., Saturday, Sept. 7, 2013. (Jeff McIntosh/Canadian Press)

Rohan Dennis, a 23-year-old Australian cyclist, has won the first-ever Tour of Alberta, after a gruelling 900-kilometre race over five stages.

23-year-old Australian Rohan Dennis wins overall title at inaugural race. (Courtesy: Twitter/@RohanDennis)

Dennis, who rides with Team Garmin-Sharp, won the overall title Sunday afternoon, finishing the fifth and final stage of the Tour with a 15-second lead.

American cyclist Brent Bookwalter of the BMC Racing Team came in second, while Italian contender Damiano Caruso finished the six-day tour third overall.

Germany's Patrick Gretsch and the Netherlands' Robert Gesink followed in fourth and fifth respectively.

Slovakian competitor Peter Sagan, of Cannondale Pro Cycling, won the fifth stage of the race, which started in Okotoks and finished in downtown Calgary.

Sagan also won the prologue in Edmonton on Tuesday and the first stage of the race from Devon to Camrose the following day.

Among the Canadian competitors, Ryan Anderson of Spruce Grove, Alta., was the top Canadian finisher, coming in at 8th place.

The 26-year-old Edmonton-born cyclist rides for the Optum-Kelly Benefit Strategies team and currently lives in Vancouver.

First in Canada

The Tour of Alberta is the first of its kind in Canada and passed through about 20 Alberta communities.

More than 115 of the world's fastest cyclists competed for the coveted yellow jersey.

The racers included the winner of the 2011 Tour de France and the 2012 Giro d'Italia.

Officials say the race raised the international profile of the province and brought in an estimated $35 million in economic benefits.

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