Michal Kwiatkowski won Tirreno-Adriatico after a strong time trial ©LaPresse

Poland’s Michal Kwiatkowski claimed the general classification at Tirreno-Adriatico, as Australia’s Rohan Dennis won the final stage in San Benedetto del Tronto.

Kwiatkowski held a narrow three second lead over Italy’s Damiano Caruso heading into the 10 kilometres individual time trial.

The former world road race champion was the final rider out of the start, with a crowd eager to see whether he would be able to preserve his lead.

Dennis posted the fastest time on the course as the countdown to Kwiatkowski’s effort continued.

The Australian completed the course in a time of 11min 15sec.

He ended three seconds faster than The Netherlands’ Jos van Emden at the end of the day, with Spain’s Jonathan Castroviejo a further four down.

Dennis’ effort was enough to bookend the race for BMC Racing after they had triumphed in the team time trial on the opening day.

While they celebrated stage seven success, their Caruso would miss out on the general classification.

Kwiatkowski was able to extend his advantage to 24 seconds over the Italian as the Team Sky rider claimed overall victory.

Australia's Rohan Dennis won the individual time trial by three seconds ©LaPresse
Australia's Rohan Dennis won the individual time trial by three seconds ©LaPresse

"Tirreno-Adriatico is the most important stage win in my career so far," Kwiatkowski said.

"This is a beautiful race with a beautiful trophy.

"It’s also one of the hardest stage races to win. It’s been a difficult week for Team Sky.

"We had some bad luck with Geraint Thomas but, at the end of the day, we were really motivated to have a very good race, we did it.

"The trident trophy gives me a wonderful feeling."

Thomas, who lost the race lead due to a mechanical on Saturday (March 10), performed well in the time trial to move up to third in the general classification.

The Briton ended 32 seconds down on Kwiatkowski to complete the podium places.

 The International Cycling Union WorldTour is continue with the one-day class Milan-San Remo on Saturday (March 17).