Amgen Tour, Stage 6: Van Garderen Widens Lead
Tejay van Garderen of the BMC Racing Team won Friday’s individual time trial at the Amgen Tour of California to increase his lead with two days of the race to go.
Received Extra Motivation
Van Garderen stomped up the final climb to beat Lieuwe Westra (Vacansoleil-DCM Procycling Team) by 23 seconds and third-place finisher Rohan Dennis by 28 seconds in the 31.6-kilometer race against the clock. In the overall standings, van Garderen is 1:47 ahead of Michael Rogers (Team Saxo-Tinkoff) and 2:57 ahead of third-placed Cameron Meyer (Orica-GreenEDGE). “I didn’t know how I was doing because my radio wasn’t working – but it didn’t matter because I was on the gas the whole way,” van Garderen said. “There was really no place that you could hold back. It started straight away up a climb and then there was ripping headwind on that flat section, so you really had to dig deep there. Of course, the climb up to the finish was hard.” Van Garderen, who cradled his month-old daughter, Rylan, in the podium ceremony, said he received inspiration from several family members who awaited him at the finish. “Having my wife and my new daughter and my mother-in-law here definitely gave me some extra motivation,” he said. “It was incredible. I couldn’t have asked for a better day.”
Three In Top 10 On The Stage
Two of van Garderen’s teammates, Marco Pinotti and Mathias Frank, placed fifth and ninth, respectively. Pinotti rode his BMC timemachine TM01 to the base of the three-kilometer finishing climb before switching to his BMC teammachine SLR01. In the overall standings, Frank is fourth, 24 seconds behind Meyer, with a mountain-top finish ahead for the penultimate stage. “We know it’s a big stage tomorrow with the first climb coming directly at the start and then Mt. Diablo at the end,” BMC Racing Team Directeur Sportif John Lelangue said of the 147.1-km race. “But we can be confident. We have a strong leader and we also have Mathias who is in the top five and still in contention for the podium. All the rest of the guys are really motivated, like they have been since the beginning, to help Tejay win his first tour. And surely here in California, for a U.S. team like us, it is a big pleasure for us to be in yellow before the last weekend.”
Listen to complete comments from Lelangue and van Garderen on the BMC Racing Team Audio Line: