BMC’s joy at Greg Van Avermaet’s stage victory and ascent to the race lead on the penultimate day of Tirreno-Adriatico was tempered by designated team leader Tejay van Garderen losing all hope of final overall victory when he was caught up in a crash in the finale.
Van Garderen was among the riders held up by a crash with 5 kilometres remaining, as a lined-out peloton battled to pull back the eight-man winning move, which featured Van Avermaet, Peter Sagan (Tinkoff) and Zdenek Stybar (Etixx-QuickStep).
Although van Garderen avoided falling in the incident, a broken spoke left him requiring mechanical assistance and he was unable to latch back onto the main peloton. The American rolled across the line 1:20 down on the stage, losing all hope of a high finish on general classification.
Van Garderen had begun the day in 4th place overall, just 9 seconds off the lead and very much in the hunt for final victory despite the cancellation of Sunday’s summit finish due to heavy snow. He now lies 26th overall, 1:32 behind Van Avermaet.
“Luckily I didn’t go down but I had to take a wheel change and couldn’t quite get back with the peloton. Taylor Phinney and Alessandro De Marchi did a great job of trying to pace me back but sometimes that’s just how it goes,” van Garderen said in a statement issued by his BMC team.
Tirreno-Adriatico was the first major target of van Garderen’s season and he vowed to maintain his motivation for Tuesday’s short, concluding time trial at San Benedetto del Tronto.
You can read more at Cyclingnews.com