Cadel Evans Wins Criterium International

BMC Racing Team’s Tour de France winner Cadel Evans answered every challenge on the climb to the finish Sunday on the way to winning his first Criterium International.

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The defending Tour de France champion placed fourth in a four-up sprint that was won by Pierrick Fedrigo (FDJ-BigMat) to take the overall victory by eight seconds over Fedrigo. Evans took the lead of the two-day, three stage race by winning Saturday afternoon’s Stage 2 time trial by 0.3 seconds over Michael Rogers (Sky Pro Cycling).

“Yesterday was a good indication and a nice confidence boost,” Evans said. “Sometimes things go well and it all comes together. Up until this point, I had trouble bringing things together. But I knew to keep working at it and things would come together. It’s a good indication, but we have big races still to come.”

Defending Evans’ lead on the final stage was not an easy job, said BMC Racing Team Assistant Director Max Sciandri. “The team was absolutely incredible,” Sciandri said. “Tim Roe and Yannick Eijssen pulled for something like 150 of the 179 kilometers.”

In the final 14 kilometers, Evans was first assisted by teammate Brent Bookwalter, then Marco Pinotti and finally Amaël Moinard. With 18 riders within 15 seconds of the lead, the BMC Racing Team riders kept the pace high to ward off attacks on the ascent of the Col de l’Ospedale.”As a team we worked really well today,” Evans said.

“Today, the young guys started out and I think for them it was an honour for them to ride in a part of France for the yellow jersey.” When the road pitched steeply upward inside the final three kilometers, Evans put in a dig of his own to reduce a group of less than 10 to the final four, which did not include Rogers – who was tied with him on time.

“As a race with three short stages, it’s sometimes a little bit difficult to manage with the time bonuses (at the finish) and a mountain top finish,” Evans said. Until Sunday, Evans’ previous best finish in two appearances at Criterium International was sixth in 2010.

Audio Interview with Cadel Evans

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