USA Pro Cycling Challenge: Win Three for Sagan


The sixth stage of USA Pro Cycling Challenge saw Peter Sagan claim his third win in the American race whilst Van Garderen still leads overall whilst Edmondson continues to shine

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The stage from Loveland to Fort Collins, 185 km saw Sagan led out by his Cannondale team with the Tour de France Green jersey winner finishing ahead of Megzec and Van Avermaet. “When your team work all the day to let you win, you face the final sprint with an extra oomph” said Sagan.

“Today’s breakaway was well equipped and dangerous and my teammates really rode well. In the finale was my turn. I searched for the best position, then I waited for the peloton to catch Leal and Rogers before sprinting at 200 metres to go. I’m really happy for this win and I want to dedicate it to our teammate Fabio Sabatini, who crashed heavily on Wednesday and now he’s in hospital.”


“I’m happy also for the form I have achieved. Honestly, I didn’t think I would perform so well and win three stages before I started this race. Tomorrow, the Denver circuit, is another big chance and then I’ll focus on the races in Canada and on the World championship. A victory in Florence? Why not? My goal now is to prepare for this race in the best way, then we’ll see”.

With the victory in Fort Collins, Sagan is now the most ‘winning’ rider of the season with 17 wins (16 for Cavendish, 15 for Kittel) while in his career (since 2010) he is now at 52 wins.

BMC 1-2 Overall – Cummings forced to abandon

BMC Racing Team’s Greg Van Avermaet finished third behind Sagan while BMC’s Tejay van Garderen and Mathias Frank remained 1-2 in the overall standings, respectively, after a fast, final day in the mountains at the USA Pro Challenge.

Van Avermaet registered his third top-five placing of the race to go along with a runner-up finish on Stage 1 and fourth on Stage 3. “I started my sprint at 200 meters to go,” Van Avermaet said. “Sagan is a bit stronger and came over me. It’s another good try, I think, and it’s nice for me to be up there in the sprints. Plus, it has given me good motivation for the next races.”


Van Avermaet said his first priority was helping keep the team’s general classification leaders safe and he said he did a fair share of work to help bring back a 15-man breakaway. “I tried to bring Tejay in a good and safe position to the finish,” he said.

“I think we did a really good job with the team. That was our first goal. Tejay is still in yellow without losing time.” The overall standings remained unchanged, with van Garderen leading Frank by 1:30 and Tom Danielson (Garmin-Sharp) by 1:42 with only Sunday’s 116.5-kilometer circuit race through the streets of Denver to go.

Van Garderen said an average speed of 46 kilometers an hour made for a tough day. “The attacks were just going non-stop,” he said. “For a lot of teams, this was kind of their last chance to try something. That made for a hard, fast race.” Despite the high speed, van Garderen said he never felt under pressure as he rode into the city where he attended his senior year of high school. “I definitely had a lot of fan support out there on the road,” he said.

“My old high school, Rocky Mountain, seemed like (it had) every single student out there on the dam today. I also knew every inch of the road we were on. It was an incredible feeling.”

While the BMC Racing Team continues to lead the team classification, it lost the services of Steve Cummings midway through the race when he begin having trouble breathing. “I just couldn’t breath and my heart rate went super high and that was it,” he said. “It’s frustrating really, I couldn’t even stay in the bunch.” In Friday’s uphill time trial, Cummings finished fourth, two seconds behind third place. “It’s frustrating, really,” he said. “You want to do your job.”

Josh Edmondson on the attack
The stage looked at one point like it would play into the hands of the move of the day with the Yorkshireman Josh Edmondson again in on the attack. The first year pro found himself in a four-man group alongside Michael Rogers (Team Saxo-Tinkoff), Thomas Dekker (Garmin-Sharp) and Javier Megias (Novo Nordisk) in the closing stages. SKY DS Dan Hunt said of the move “Josh has had a great week and it’s been a bit of a breakthrough race for him. He’s been very impressive.”




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