Thirty-five kilometers into Stage 6 of the 2012 Tour of Portugal, the UnitedHealthcare Pro Cycling Team’s Jason McCartney escaped the peloton alongside Teammates Marc de Maar (CUR) and Kai Reus, and the veteran U.S. pro rider from Iowa never looked back, winning the sixth stage of this prestigious tour in convincing manner. Karol Domagalski of Team Caja Rural took second place and Filipe Cardoso of Efapel-Glassdrive captured third place. Marc de Maar finished in the top 10 on the day, taking 8th place after contributing to the breakaway effort from which McCartney soloed to victory.
McCartney and his comrades were part of a larger 17-man breakaway early on in the stage and built a gap of six minutes at its highest point. At the 150km mark, McCartney attacked the leading group and was alone at the front, gaining time on the chase group with each passing kilometer. The aggressive approach Team UnitedHealthcare has been taking throughout the Tour of Portugal paid off once again landing McCartney on the top step of the podium.
While McCartney was winning in Portugal, his Teammates in the Rocky Mountains of Colorado at the USA Pro Challenge cheered him and their fellow squad members on during their team meeting prior to the start of Stage 2 in Montrose, Colorado. As McCartney crossed the line, the meeting erupted with enthusiasm and cheer prior to the boys exiting the Team bus en route to the start.
General Manager and Team Director, Mike Tamayo, commented on McCartney’s victory, saying, “Jason’s stage win couldn’t have come at a better time. We’re coming into Stage 2 here at the USA Pro Challenge and in our Team meeting we watched the last 5km of Jason coming in solo to win the day. So the boys were cheering on the bus and as you can imagine, it’s motivating. It boosts morale and builds even more confidence going into our own stage here. The boys are riding really well right now, Utah, Portugal and straight into the Pro Challenge with the way they rode yesterday. I’m really proud of the Team across the board.”
The Team has posted significant results in Portugal through six stages, claiming two run-away stage wins (Jay Thomson and Jason McCartney), three days in the yellow jersey (Jay Thomson), three days atop the Team Classification, and four KOM jerseys (Jay Thomson). In addition, Boy van Poppel and Marc de Maar each posted a Top 5 finish in the early stages while Jonny Clarke pulled off a long run in the breakaway with a finishing attack inside the final 3km yesterday.
Team Director, Hendrik Redant, stated, “The boys are riding quite well here in Portugal. Jason did a tremendous job today, as did Marc and Kai and the rest of the guys. Everyone plays a role. They are united and working hard for each other every stage and the results they are achieving are the reward.”
The 10-stage Volta a Portugal em Bicicleta 2012 (Tour of Portugal) continues tomorrow and runs from August 15 – August 26, 2012.
TEAM UNITEDHEALTHCARE ROSTER FOR THE 2012 VOLTA A PORTUGAL (August 15-26):
- Hilton Clarke (AUS)
- Jonny Clarke (AUS)
- Marc de Maar (CUR)
- Davide Frattini (ITA)
- Jason McCartney (USA)
- Kai Reus (NED)
- Jay Thomson (RSA)
- Boy van Poppel (NED)
- Brad White (USA)
- Team Director: Hendrik Redant (BEL)