- Associated Press - Saturday, February 8, 2014

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) - Even a third straight stage win for Germany’s Marcel Kittel wasn’t enough to deny American Taylor Phinney overall victory in the inaugural Dubai Tour on Saturday.

Giant-Shimano rider Kittel dominated the sprint finish to come in ahead of Australian Mark Renshaw, of Omega Pharma QuickStep, and Astana’s Andrea Guardini of Italy.

Phinney played it safe and successfully held on to the blue jersey that he got after winning the opening day’s individual time trial. He finished the tour 15 seconds ahead of BMC Racing teammate Stephen Cummings, while Garmin-Sharp’s Lasse Norman Hansen was third, 17 seconds behind Phinney.

“Every day I felt like it was my race to lose, so every day I felt relieved,” Phinney said.

Kittel’s winning time for the 122-kilometer final stage was 2 hours, 41 minutes, 9 seconds.

Briton Mark Cavendish was expected to be Kittel’s biggest challenger but had a puncture, leaving it to his teammate Renshaw to fight it out with the eventual stage winner. Peter Sagan failed to finish after having problems with his bike less than 5 kilometers from the finish line.

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