Stannard takes Tour of Britain's stage 7, Alaphilippe keeps lead

Ian Stannard won the Tour of Britain's seventh stage

Ian Stannard won the Tour of Britain's seventh stage on Saturday, but France's Julian Alaphilippe retained the overall lead heading to the race finale in London.

Team Sky rider Stannard moved clear of a breakaway group with 16 kilometres to go and eventually finished 59 seconds ahead of Germany's Nils Politt.

Italy's Giovanni Carboni was three minutes and nine seconds behind in third place after the 215-kilometre stage from West Bridgford to Mansfield.

"When I got into the break today I was pretty confident. I looked at the other guys, how they were riding all day and I knew that I had the edge," Stannard said.

Quick-Step Floors rider Alaphilippe has a 17-second overall advantage on Dutchman Wout Poels of Sky and Slovenia's Primoz Roglic of Lotto Nl in third spot.

Alaphilippe will bid to clinch the title on Sunday when the final stage starts and finishes on Regent Street in London.

Stannard was the catalyst for a five-man breakaway just 20 kilometres into the longest stage of the race.

Politt also turned in a gutsy ride to finish a clear second, but he was dropped by Stannard and could do little as the Englishman stretched his lead all the way to the finish.

Leading positions after stage 7:

1. Ian Stannard (GBR/Sky) 4hrs 1min 51 secs, 2. Nils Politt (GER/Katusha) at 59 secs, 3. Giovanni Carboni (ITA/Bardiani) at 3mins 09secs, 4. Mark McNally (GBR/Wanty) at 3mins 54secs, 5. Emils Liepins (LAT/OnePro) at 4mins 04secs

Leading general classification after stage 7: 1. Julian Alaphilippe (FRA/QST) 19hrs 46 min 54 secs, 2. Wout Poels (NED/Sky) at 17secs, 3. Primoz Roglic (SLO/LNL) at 33 secs, 4. Patrick Bevin (NZL/BMC) at 46 secs, 5. Bob Jungels (LUX/QST) at 51 secs