Report: Phinney Wins Dubai Tour; Steve Cummings Runner-Up


Mark Cavendish hits bollard, Marcel Kittel makes it three stages whilstr BMC have a 101 with Phinney winning from Steve Cummings

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BMC’s Taylor Phinney completed a wire-to-wire victory Saturday at the Dubai Tour – while also earning best young rider honors – and teammate Steve Cummings was runner-up

Phinney had won the Stage 1 individual time trial Wednesday, added another one second to his lead with third place on Stage 2 and finished the race with a 15-second cushion on Cummings and 17 seconds ahead of Lasse Norman Hansen (Garmin-Sharp), in third.

The overall victory at a stage race is Phinney’s first in four years as a professional and marks the BMC Racing Team’s third win of the season. “This was an important victory for Taylor and the BMC Racing Team,” President/General Manager Jim Ochowicz said. “Taylor has shown his maturity in leading the team throughout the week and the team is keeping pace with our expectations for 2014.” The BMC Racing Team also took home the team classification, helped along by newcomer Peter Velits, who finished ninth overall.

Phinney said his offseason preparation laid the groundwork for success. “I haven’t had a problem-free winter, injury or sickness-wise, ever,” he said. “This was my first solid winter. I had a great time in the U.S. with my friends in Boulder, Colorado, and a really solid month of training in San Diego. And always with my personal soigneur/personal massage therapist with me.”

“I invested a lot into this year. I knew it was a very important year so I’m super happy starting the season this way.” The past U.S. national time trial champion also thanked his teammates. “Every day, I was relieved about having a great team around me,” he said. “They gave me a lot of confidence.”

Joining Phinney, Cummings and Velits on the winning squad were Yannick Eijssen, Norwegian national road champion Thor Hushovd, Klaas Lodewyck, Sebastian Lander and Rick Zabel.



Taylor Phinney’s first Tour win as a professional. Photo: 

Final Stage
Like it did on Stages 2 and 3, the BMC Racing Team worked hard to preserve Phinney’s lead, chasing down a three-man breakaway near the end of Saturday’s 123-kilometre race. In the end, Marcel Kittel (Team Giant-Shimano) earned his third straight stage win by out-sprinting Mark Renshaw (Omega Pharma-Quick Step) and Andrea Guardini (Astana Pro Team).

“We never really had problems,” Steve Cummings said. “Taylor was outstanding, so it’s pretty good to finish second to him when he’s so strong in the time trial. I thought the whole team rode really well as a unit and gelled well.”

Sport Director Max Sciandri said it might have looked easy, but preparing for the type of race he thought it would be was key. “You come here early in February and the competition is tough,” he said.

“Just look at the field. I kind of knew that the time trial was going to determine the overall of this race – a bit like in China (the Tour of Beijing) the first year, when they had a time trial. So that was planned really well and executed to perfection by two of our guys.”

It hasn’t been Mark Cavendish’s Tour. The final stage was his chance to get the hands in the air but bad luck ruined that. Filling in for Cavendish after he crashed,
Mark Renshaw adapted to an unexpected scenario in the final kilometre of 123km Dubai Tour Stage 4 on Saturday.

Despite an excellent leadout for Mark Cavendish that included five riders in front with 2.7km to go, and three leading him out approaching the final kilometre, Cavendish dropped out of contention at approximately 1.5km remaining due to a crash after hitting a traffic object. Renshaw was then left to fight for the sprint.

Despite the chaos, the quality of the OPQS leadout and a quick reaction by Renshaw put him in good position to contest. He finished second to Marcel Kittel (Giant-Shimano). Andrea Guardini (Astana Pro Team) was 3rd.

“We were really motivated today, it was a nice sprint,” Cavendish said. “We planned it really well. The team rode really good, it was a flat stage. Unfortunately, coming into the final, it’s what can happen. It’s a dangerous sport. I hit some bollard in the road and I’ve got a swollen hand and it ripped the chain out of my rear mech.”

“I just count myself lucky because if it was a concrete or a metal one like in Europe, I wouldn’t be here to talk about it right now. But, I was happy with the team. The team carried on and we have to be happy with Renshaw taking 2nd behind Marcel Kittel. The team did a good job and it showed that if things had gone a bit better we could have got the win.”

“The race went well up until the final kilometres,” Renshaw said. “There was a little bit of a mix-up in the final. It was a shame because we set the stage up for him. The incident was only with a little more than a kilometre to go and we had to make a quick change of planning, so finishing 2nd is probably the maximum I could do.”

1 KITTEL Marcel Team Giant-Shimano 02:41:09
2 RENSHAW Mark Omega Pharma – Quick-Step Cycling Team
3 GUARDINI Andrea Astana Pro Team
4 FERRARI Roberto Lampre – Merida
5 PORSEV Alexander Team Katusha
6 RATTO Daniele Cannondale
7 BONIFAZIO Niccolo Lampre – Merida
8 MIYAZAWA Takashi Vini-Fantini-Nippo
9 HAEDO Lucas Sebastian Skydive Dubai Pro Cycling Team
10 LOBATO DEL VALLE Juan Jose Movistar Team

11 FARRAR Tyler Garmin Sharp
13 HUSHOVD Thor BMC Racing Team
18 CUMMINGS Stephen BMC Racing Team
23 PETACCHI Alessandro Omega Pharma – Quick-Step Cycling Team
24 PHINNEY Taylor BMC Racing Team
26 COSTA Rui Lampre – Merida
49 CANCELLARA Fabian Trek Factory Racing
66 VALVERDE BELMONTE Alejandro Movistar Team
71 NIBALI Vincenzo Astana Pro Team
91 COUTTS Alex RTS-Santic Racing Team
105 CAVENDISH Mark Omega Pharma – Quick-Step Cycling Team @ 1:10
106 DOWSETT Alex Movistar Team
124 SAGAN Peter Cannondale 02:58

1 PHINNEY Taylor BMC Racing Team 09:31:33
2 CUMMINGS Stephen BMC Racing Team 00:15
3 NORMAN HANSEN Lasse Garmin Sharp 00:17
4 MARTIN Tony Omega Pharma – Quick-Step Cycling Team 00:23
5 CANCELLARA Fabian Trek Factory Racing 00:30
6 KITTEL Marcel Team Giant-Shimano ,,
7 MALORI Adriano Movistar Team 00:37
8 BODNAR Maciej Cannondale 00:40
9 VELITS Peter BMC Racing Team 00:42
10 VAN BAARLE Dylan Garmin Sharp ,,
11 POZZATO Filippo Lampre – Merida 00:45
12 SUTHERLAND Rory Tinkoff-Saxo 00:47
13 CHERNETCKII Sergei Team Katusha 00:48
14 EIJSSEN Yannick BMC Racing Team ,,
15 COSTA Rui Lampre – Merida ,,
16 CASTROVIEJO Jonathan Movistar Team 00:49
17 NIBALI Vincenzo Astana Pro Team ,,
18 VELITS Martin Omega Pharma – Quick-Step Cycling Team ,,
19 NAVARDAUSKAS Ramunas Garmin Sharp ,,
20 JUNGELS Bob Trek Factory Racing 00:50

50 CAVENDISH Mark Omega Pharma – Quick-Step Cycling Team 02:12
96 COUTTS Alex RTS-Santic Racing Team 05:35
108 DOWSETT Alex Movistar Team 08:03




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