ATOC Welcomes 12 Host Cities for 2014

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ATOC Welcomes 12 Host Cities for 2014

ATOC Welcomes 12 Host Cities for 2014

Challenging Route to Take the World’s Top Cyclists Across More Than 700 Miles of Striking California Terrain During America’s Premier Professional Cycling Race May 11–18, 2014

 

SACRAMENTO (Nov. 5, 2013) – The Amgen Tour of California will return to Sacramento, the Capital of California, for the start of the ninth edition of America’s largest cycling race announced AEG, presenter of the race. The eight day stage race will return to a route traveling north-to-south from May 11-18, 2014 along more than 700 miles of scenic roads through some of California’s most picturesque backdrops. Considered America’s largest and most prestigious cycling event, the overall start of the Amgen Tour of California will begin in front of the state’s Capital Building and travel through 11 host cities during the eight day event including Folsom (first time host city), San Jose, Mt. Diablo, Monterey, Cambria (first time host city), Pismo Beach (first time host city), Santa Barbara, Santa Clarita, Mountain High (first time host city), Pasadena and Thousand Oaks.

 

“We strive to raise the bar each year to present an Amgen Tour of California that not only continues to attract and challenge the world’s top cyclists, but also fittingly features and promotes California’s unique sights and striking scenery,” said Kristin Bachochin, executive director of the Amgen Tour of California and senior vice president of AEG Sports. “We’re confident our worldwide audience will enjoy everything next year’s race has to offer – from epic climbs to rolling hills and thrilling finishes by sea, it’s a testament to California’s iconic terrain.”

 

The first day of racing will begin and finish in the state’s Capital of Sacramento, which previously hosted 2009′s spectacular prologue as well as the stage finishes in 2007, 2008, 2010 and 2011.

 

“The City of Sacramento could not be more proud to host the Amgen Tour of California and Stage 1 to kick off race festivities for such a distinguished group of athletes,” said Kevin Johnson, mayor of Sacramento. “There is no better way to start the race’s route through California’s iconic landmarks, attractions and scenery than in the state’s capital city.”

 

The following day, the Individual Time Trial (Stage 2) will see racers competing against the clock in the former gold rush city of Folsom, which makes its race debut this year. For Stage 3, the peloton will return to California’s third largest city, San Jose (the only city to have participated in all nine editions of the race), for a stage start before traveling more than 50 miles north, gaining altitude as the route winds up Mt. Diablo for mountaintop finish at the famed summit for the second consecutive race.

 

The arts community of Monterey, which last hosted the race in 2006, will be the setting for the Stage 4 start. From there, the race will traverse approximately 100 miles south to finish the day in the seaside village of Cambria, which also makes its race debut in 2014.

 

Stage 5 will kick off in the “Clam Capital of the World,” Pismo Beach, where riders will be treated to sights of the city’s famous sand dunes for the first time this year. Additionally, sweeping ocean views will provide the perfect backdrop for racers and spectators alike as the route continues south to the American Riviera-like town of Santa Barbara for the Stage 5 finish.

 

Santa Clarita, which is home to a number of athletic champions such as swimmer Anthony Ervin and track star Allyson Felix, will host the Stage 6 start, before riders head to Mountain High for another mountaintop finish. The peloton will return to Santa Clarita for the Stage 7 start and will finish that day in the historic town of Pasadena.

 

The eighth and final stage of the 2014 Amgen Tour of California will start and finish in the title sponsor’s home of Thousand Oaks, which played host to the official race finish in 2010 and 2011.

 

“The Amgen Tour of California is always a challenging stage race that tests even the best cyclists in the world,” said pro cyclist Freddie Rodriguez, of the Jelly Belly Cycling Team presented by Kenda. “It’s a race I look forward to, and am sure the 2014 race will not disappoint!”

 

Amgen returns as the race’s title sponsor for the ninth consecutive year, continuing to leverage the event to raise awareness of the important resources available to people affected by cancer—from prevention through survivorship—through its Breakaway from Cancer® initiative. (For more information, www.breakawayfromcancer.com)

 

“Amgen was founded with the mission to serve patients by developing innovative therapies for serious illness. Our sponsorship of the Amgen Tour of California provides the unique opportunity to highlight how biotechnology has helped advance medicine for patients,” said Ray Jordan, senior vice president of Corporate Affairs at Amgen. “The race also helps us connect cancer survivors to important resources through Breakaway from Cancer. We look forward to honoring cancer survivors in all of the host communities, including Thousand Oaks, our hometown since 1980.”

 

Carrying an elite distinction, the Amgen Tour of California is listed on the international professional cycling calendar (2. HC, meaning “beyond category”), awarding important, world-ranking points to the top finishers.

 

The Amgen Tour of California continues to draw global attention as one of the most anticipated cycling events of the year – one that attracts Olympic medalists, World Champions and top Tour de France competitors.

 

The 13 Host City partners for the 2014 Amgen Tour of California include:

 

• Stage 1: Sunday, May 11 – Sacramento

• Stage 2: Monday, May 12 – Folsom (Individual Time Trial)

• Stage 3: Tuesday, May 13 – San Jose to Mount Diablo

• Stage 4: Wednesday, May 14 – Monterey to Cambria

• Stage 5: Thursday, May 15 – Pismo Beach to Santa Barbara

• Stage 6: Friday, May 16 – Santa Clarita to Mountain High

• Stage 7: Saturday, May 17 – Santa Clarita to Pasadena

• Stage 8: Sunday, May 18 – Thousand Oaks

Results: Van Garderen Wins Tour of California, Sagan Takes Green Jersey

Results: Van Garderen Wins Tour of California, Sagan Takes Green Jersey

Results: Van Garderen Wins Tour of California, Sagan Takes Green Jersey

 

Barring an unexpected mishap or a successful breakaway featuring one of the riders who threatened his lead on the general classification, Tejay van Garderen (BMC) only had to finish the final stage to clinch his first, major UCI stage rage victory.  With only a few small climbs and one intermediate sprint, the stage would favor a pack finish.  Still, if Cameron Meyer (OGE), Michael Rogers (TST), or Janier Acevedo (JSH) were going to stand a chance of moving up in the race, they would have to force a big breakaway and make it stick, which would require a magical confluence of factors.

 

Tyler Farrar (GRS) started the final stage but a single point behind Peter Sagan (CAN) in the competition for the green jersey.  If the intermediate sprint went to neither rider, the man placing stronger at the finish would take victory in the points classification.  Farrar rode the bulk of the tour better than Sagan and there was no doubt he could feel the green jersey close at hand.

  [Read more...]

Images- Stage 7 ATOC ©Brian Hodes

Images- Stage 7 ATOC ©Brian Hodes

Images- Stage 7 ATOC ©Brian Hodes

Jersey Winners

Amgen Leader Jersey – Tejay van Garderen (USA), BMC Racing Team (USA)van Garderen has won the Amgen Leader Jersey three times since stage 1

  • Nissan King of the Mountain Jersey – Carter Jones (USA), BISSELL Pro Cycling (USA)
    • Jones has won the Nissan King of the Mountain Jersey for all seven stages
  • Visit California Sprint Jersey – Peter Sagan (SVK), Cannondale Pro Cycling (ITA)
    • Sagan has won the Visit California Sprint Jersey four times since stage 1
  • Crunchies Best Young Rider Jersey – Lawson Craddock (USA), Bontrager Cycling Team (USA)
    • Craddock has won the Crunchies Best Young Rider Jersey six times since stage 1
  • Amgen’s Breakaway from Cancer® Most Courageous Rider Jersey – Lieuwe Westra (NED), Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling Team (NED)

 

Stage 7 Top – 3

  • FIRST— Leopold König (CZE), Team NetApp-Endura (GER)
  • SECOND – Janier Acevedo (COL), Team Jamis – Hagens Berman (USA)
  • THIRD – Tejay van Garderen (USA), BMC Racing Team (USA)

 

Result: King Leopold Summits Mt. Diablo for Tour of California Stage Win

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Leopold Koenig (TNE) won the day with an aggressive ride up the slopes of Mt. Diablo after 45 minutes of climbing. Janier Acevedo (JSH) made a huge effort on the HC climb to finish stage seven, overtaking Cameron Meyer in the overall standings and setting himself up for a podium finish. Nobody could threaten Tejay van Garderen (BMC), however, and the yellow jersey will be safe for another day.

With the mountain-top finish at Mt. Diablo, stage seven would likely be the last chance for any shakeup in the general classification. If Janier Acevedo (JSH) could make an effort like he had on stage two, he might be able to move himself back into contention for the podium. For Michael Rogers (TST), sitting in second place 1:47 behind Tejay van Garderen (BMC), the climb wouldn’t bode well. Rogers got dropped by van Garderen and the other climbing specialists at the end of stage two, so it would be interesting to see how Saxo-Tinkoff would ride stage seven.

After an aggressive start, it took twelve miles for a significant breakaway to get established. Andy Schleck (RLT) joined the group of seven, perhaps hoping to take the breakaway all the way to the mountain and being the climb with a significant advantage to take a shot at moving up in GC. Carter Jones (BPC) also made the move with his eye on the category two climb early in the stage. Jones rode the entire Tour of California impressively, spending hours in the breakaway and defending the polka dot jersey that he claimed on stage one. He would go on to win both the KOM climbs out of the breakaway in stage seven, clinching the jersey, barring any catastrophe in the final stage.

Considering the importance of the Tour’s queen stage, the break never made it further than 4:00 away from the peloton. Jamis Hagens-Berman did the majority of the heavy lifting to try and bring the move back, shaving several minutes off over the course of six or seven miles. The advantage had come down to under a minute by the time the breakaway started climbing, at which point Andy Schleck took over the pacemaking and riders started popping off the back of the breakaway. When the peloton hit the climb, the damage was instantaneous as sprinters relented to the force of gravity.

In the breakaway, Laurent Didier (RLT) started putting on the pressure, pushing the pace and expanding the gap on the peloton. Though he wouldn’t move into the winners circle with a strong ride up Mt. Diablo, it looked like Andy Schleck was ready to go it alone for the stage win. Unexpectedly, Lieuwe Westra (VCD) attacked out of the breakaway with David de la Cruz (TNE) on his wheel and put a swift minute on Schleck. If he could hold on to that advantage for the eight miles remaining in the stage, Westra would claim another win for himself. At that point, the main field was down to only fifteen riders and BMC was controlling things with an iron hand, ready to respond to any attack from riders who threatened van Garderen’s hold on the general classification.

With Westra and de la Cruz still one minute up the road, Jens Voigt (RLT) naturally attacked the peloton, hoping to do some damage. With his twenty-minute deficit on GC, Voigt perhaps thought the pack would let him go. At the end of the day, that’s just Jens being Jens, animating the race and proving why he is the fan favorite. Francisco Mancebo (5HR), also far enough behind van Garderen to not raise alarm in the peloton, attacked out of the field and passed Voigt like he was standing still. The breakaway riders began to falter, coming within thirty seconds of the pack, and Mancebo caught them with 2.5 miles to go. Mancebo would need several minutes to move onto the podium.

With 1.8 miles to go, Acevedo made his big move, rocketing out of the field in a bid to climb his way back into the podium. He rode across the gap with ease, picking up and dropping Mancebo along the way, and putting twenty seconds into the field. If he kept opening the gap, he could take third place back from Cameron Meyer (OGE).

Working with Leopold Koenig (TNE), Acevedo rode a blistering tempo, pedaling up the side of the mountain with ease. Koenig attacked in the final meters, putting distance into Acevedo and winning the stage with glory. For Acevedo, the effort was enough. He gained enough time on Meyer to take third overall and would start the final stage in a strong position to end the Tour of California on the podium.

Final:

1. Leopold Koenig (TNE)

2. Janier Acevedo (JSH)

3. Tejay can Garderen (BMC)

4. Michael Rogers (TST)
5. Mathias Frank (BMC)

6. Matthew Busche (RLT)
7. Lawson Craddock (BCT)

8. Francisco Mancebo (5HR)

9. JJ Mendes (TNE)

10. Marc de Maar (UHC)

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Amgen Tour of California Stage 6 Images ©Brian Hodes

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Stage 6 Men’s Time Trial Top – 3

  • FIRST— Tejay van Garderen (USA), BMC Racing Team (USA)
  • SECOND – Lieuwe Westra (NED), Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling Team (NED)
  • THIRD – Rohan Dennis (AUS), Team Garmin-Sharp (USA)

 

Stage 6 Women’s Time Trial Top – 3

  • FIRST— Evelyn Stevens (USA), Specialized-lululemon (USA)
  • SECOND – Alison Powers (USA), NOW and Novartis for MS (USA)
  • THIRD – Kristin McGrath (USA), Exergy Twenty16 (USA)

 

Result: Van Garderen Smashes TT, Retains Tour of California Lead

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Van Garderen rode an amazing time trial today, putting still more distance between himself and Michael Rogers.  Cameron Meyer moved up in GC after a blistering TT, while Janier Acevedo ceded time to his main rivals.  The women, who raced first, showed fast times, with Evelyn Stevens coming in for the W.

 

For the women’s time trial, run as a big money exhibition race before the men started the stage, the odds-on favorites for the win were Amber Neben (Pasta Zara-Cogeas), Evelyn Stevens (Specialized-Lululemon), and Alison Powers (NOW and Novartis).  Neben and Stevens have both been champions in the event and Powers demonstrated her ability to ride hard with a tough win at the Redlands Classic earlier in the year.  Dark horse candidates for the win included Katie Compton (Trek Cyclocross Collective), who has crushed more cross races than most people have started, and Julie Dibens (Trek), a champion in the notoriously tough Xterra triathlon race.

 

It looked like Neben would ride to the win as she put time into her main rivals through the early time splits, but an unexpected crash while descending took Neben out of the race and paved the way for Powers and Stevens to finish within a minute of each other, Stevens taking the win with an average speed of 21.3mph and a 55:49 final time.

 

For the men, Tejay van Garderen (BMC) was widely expected to win.  The only question was, “how much time will he be able to gain on Michael Rogers (TST)?”  For van Garderen, trying to gain time on Janier Acevedo (JSH) would be a secondary goal, considering the powerful Colombian climber trailed by only 0:50 and the punishing climb up Mt. Diablo was still ahead.

 

Rohan Dennis (GRS) set the first really fast time of the day with a 49:19, the first rider to break 50 minutes.  The TT course ended in a sharp climb to the finish, which hurt quite a few riders times.  Some riders opted to change out their TT bikes for road bikes at the base of the climb, looking to shed a few grams and ride in a better climbing position.  Lieuwe Westra (VCD), Dutch national TT champion and stage one winner, was the next rider to set a fast time, beating Dennis by four seconds.

 

Acevedo lost at least fifteen seconds to a mechanical, losing his chain at the base of a hill.  Being a good time trialist in his own right, Acevedo should have been able to keep van Garderen and Rogers in his sights for the mountain stage.

 

Lawson Craddock (BCT) rode a solid 51:34, which would keep him in the young rider’s jersey for another day.  Cameron Meyer rode his way into the fastest time trial finishes and moved up into the standings for the general classification.

 

Acevedo and Rogers both switched out to their road bikes for the climb.  Van Garderen opted to stay on the TT bike as they hit the climb.  Acevedo rode a very strong 51:33, but it would bring him neck and neck with Meyer for the final spot on the podium. Michael Rogers rode under 50 minutes, but it wouldn’t be enough to get ahead of van Garderen, who broke the 49 minute mark with a 48:52, augmenting his lead over everyone.

 Final:

1. Tejay van Garderen (BMC)

2. Lieuwe Westra (VCD)

3. Rohan Dennis (GRS)

4. Michael Rogers (TST)

5. Marco Pinotti (BMC)

6. Cameron Meyer (OGE)

7. Bob Jungels (RLT)

8. Leopold Koenig (TNE)

9. Mathias Frank (BMC)

10. Sylvain Chavanel (OPQ)

Images-ATOC Stage 5 ©Brian Hodes

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ATOC

Jersey Winners

  • Amgen Leader Jersey – Tejay van Garderen (USA), BMC Racing Team (USA)
  • Nissan King of the Mountain Jersey – Carter Jones (USA), BISSELL Pro Cycling (USA)
    • Jones has won the Nissan King of the Mountain Jersey for all five stages
  • Visit California Sprint Jersey – Peter Sagan (SVK), Cannondale Pro Cycling (ITA)
    • Sagan has won the Visit California Sprint Jersey twice since stage 1
  • Crunchies Best Young Rider Jersey – Lawson Craddock (USA), Bontrager Cycling Team (USA)
    • Craddock has won the Crunchies Best Young Rider Jersey four times since stage 1
  • Amgen’s Breakaway from Cancer® Most Courageous Rider Jersey – Jens Voigt (GER), RADIOSHACK LEOPARD TREK (LUX)

 

Stage 5 Top – 3

  • FIRST— Jens Voigt (GER), RADIOSHACK LEOPARD TREK (LUX)
  • SECOND – Tyler Farrar (USA), Team Garmin-Sharp (USA)
  • THIRD— Thor Hushovd (NOR), BMC Racing Team (USA)

Result: Tyler Farrar Triumphs in Stage Four of Amgen Tour!

Tyler Farrar

Tyler Farrar

It was a great day for Garmin-Sharp, heretofore quiet in the Tour of California, as Tyler Farrar finally claimed a stage win. In a heated sprint, the American made his way through the bunch and took the win as the Amgen Tour of California rolled into Santa Barbara. Janier Acevedo (JSH) would retain the yellow jersey for another day as the peloton finished together. This victory for Garmin comes on the same day that Ramunas Navardauskas claimed a win for the team in the Giro d’Italia, soloing to victory in Vajont.

Stage four offered the weary, sunbaked riders further respite from the mountains and the torturous sun of the high desert. Heading west and towards the sea, the riders looked forward to cool ocean breezes. Battling headwinds would be a welcome relief for the beleaguered peloton. Since the stage was relatively flat, with only a few low hills to earn KOM points, the likelihood of a sprint finish, and a possible back-to-back stage win for Peter Sagan, was high. Stage four would also be the shortest of all the stages at 84.7 miles to the finish.

 

With about 70 miles to go, Chris Baldwin (BPC), Chad Beyer (CSS), James Stemper (5HR), Nathan Brown (BCT), Frank Pipp (BPC), and Marsh Cooper (OPM) worked their way into a move. Beyer wore the most courageous rider’s jersey after his attempt to solo away from the field yesterday and Stemper had earned it after stage one’s all-day breakaway. Once again, it was the domestic teams taking the initiative to animate the race.

 

The breakaway stayed 3-4 minutes ahead through the first sprint at the end of the long, gradual descent. Since none of the riders were in contention for the green jersey, they rolled across the line riding tempo in an effort to stay away. Not the case through the first KOM, a category four climb. Stemper had claimed some KOM points during the course of his stage one breakaway, but he trailed Carter Jones (BPC) significantly. Jones teammate in the break, Chris Baldwin, attacked Stemper to prevent him from claiming enough points to threaten Jones’ lead in the mountain’s classification.

 

The breakaway riders maintained a stiff tempo, pushing the pace up to 30mph through tricky winds, but their time gap decreased steadily as the second sprint approached. With about 30 miles to go, their advantage over the peloton was down to 2:20 and shrinking fast. The field wanted to bring them back before the category three climb at Casitas Pass, after which it would be a windy, downhill charge to the finish line and a likely bunch sprint. Just before the final KOM at 20 miles to go, Nathan Brown (BCT) jumped away from the breakaway, earning some KOM points and shaking things up at the front of the race. The peloton, led by Vacansoleil, drove hard up over the climb and had the break dangling just one minute off the front.

 

Frank Pipp got dropped out of the break over a hill and then chased his way back on like a boss, descending like a madman through the winding hills leading down into Santa Barbara. With about ten miles to go, the break dangled within sight of the pack. Ted King (CAN) was the master of the chase. Working hard to tire the field and catch the break so that his teammate Sagan could go for another spring victory, King showed just what it means to be a great domestique, exemplifying Rule V in every way. Unexpectedly, Nate Brown jumped hard at the 9-mile mark in hopes of distancing himself from the fading break and the charging pack. Whether gunning for a stage win or for the Amgen courageous rider’s jersey, Brown managed to take back some time and get himself forty seconds off the front. Would the field let him go since he was out of contention for the GC? Did they even know he was out there?

 

Jens Voigt knew. The hardman from Radioshack rode off the front, passed the chase group, and then passed Brown. His move ignited the spirits of the main field and they upped the pace, bringing everything back together with 6 miles to go. Mendes (TNE) gave it a go, but Chavanel (OPQ) reeled him in as the peloton strung out behind the hard-charging French rider.

 

Garmin would take no chances in the final three miles. Lining up at the front of the race, Zabriskie pulled for over 1k at 32 miles an hour with the leadout train behind him. Tyler Farrar was denied on stage three and his teammates would give everything to set him up for stage four. Flying through a traffic circle, Matt Brammeier (CSS) attacked and put a big gap in the field with 2k to go. His effort was good, but the leadout trains were better. In the final kilometer, Tyler Farrar (GRS) pirated the Optum leadout and fought his way to the finish line over Ken Hanson and Gianni Meersman.

 

Final

1. Tyler Farrar (GRS)

2. Ken Hanson (OPM)

3. Gianni Meersman (OPQ)

4. Kris Boeckmans (VCD)

5. Peter Sagan (CAN)

6. Michael Matthews (OGE)

7. Thor Hushovd (BMC)

8. Sylvain Chavanel (OPQ)

9. Jeremy Vennel (BPC)

10. Jasper Stuyven (BCT)

 

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Beyer Earns Most Courageous Rider Jersey at California

 

Beyer Earns Most Courageous Rider Jersey at California

Beyer Earns Most Courageous Rider Jersey at California

Beyer Earns Most Courageous Rider Jersey at California

Santa Clarita, Calif. – Champion System Pro Cycling Team’s Chad Beyer earned Amgen’s Breakaway from Cancer® “most courageous rider” jersey at the Amgen Tour of California after spending much of Tuesday’s Stage 3 in a four-man break.

 

Champion System General Manager Ed Beamon said having a rider in the breakaway was the team’s main objective.

 

“It was Chad that we wanted in the move because we thought it was a good opportunity for him to potentially get a little time back,” Beamon said.

[Read more...]

Result: Sagan Wins Amgen Tour of California Stage Three

Result: Sagan Wins Amgen Tour of California Stage Three

Result: Sagan Wins Amgen Tour of California Stage Three

Peter Sagan finally broke out of his TOC slump this year by sprinting for the win in Santa Clarita. There were no changes to GC after the flat-ish stage and the KOM and young rider’s jersey also stayed with Carter Jones and Lawson Craddock respectively.

 

The blistering heat let up as the riders prepared to roll out of Palmdale. Every rider was glad to be shed of the mountains and the triple-digit temperatures. Tanner Putt (BCT), who battled the Palm Springs sun to stay within six minutes of Acevedo at the end of stage two, expressed his gratitude to be shed of the mountains and made it plain that Bontrager would try to protect Lawson Craddock’s command of the young rider’s jersey.

 

All eyes were trained on Janier Acevedo and the Jamis team at the start of stage three. The Colombian rider’s unexpected stage win put the domestic team in the position of defending the yellow jersey early in the race. Jamis’ DS, Sebastian Alexandre, realizes that trying to keep Acevedo in yellow will be an uphill battle, especially with the time trial ahead on day six. They had set out to win a stage, which the team accomplished with amazing style, and anything else is a wonderful bonus. Considering the relatively flat terrain of stage three, Jamis shouldn’t struggle to stay in yellow for at least one more day.

 

It was clear there would be no all-day breakaway for the stage when a flurry of attacks went and were covered in the early miles of the race. A promising group of 23 (including van Garderen and Sagan) got away leading into the first KOM, where Carter Jones (BPC) took maximum points to augment his lead for the mountains classification. They never got more than 45 seconds ahead before the peloton reeled them in.

The Sprint Stage Two ©Brandon Hale

The Sprint Stage Two ©Brandon Hale

Andy Schleck (RLT), Lieuwe Westra (VCD), Chad Beyer (CSS), and Gavin Mannion (BCT) got up the road with 86 miles to go. They rode a stiff tempo as the field sat up, pushing their way through the first KOM (won by Beyer) and getting about five minutes ahead of the field with 55 miles left in the race. Their group rolled through the second KOM shortly thereafter, not battling because none of the riders were in contention for the jersey. The group stayed away through the first sprint (points leader Lieuwe Westra capturing the sprint and augmenting his lead), but Cannondale decided they had had enough of the breakaway riders and the peloton ratcheted up the pace in an effort to shrink the leaders’ gap.

 

Mancebo (5HR) suffered a series of mechanicals about 25 miles from the finish line. He had been sitting in position for a strong GC placing, but the mechanical struck as the peloton pushed the pace in an effort to bring back the break. He had to dig deep to get back on, working his way through the team cars in the tricky winds.

 

Meanwhile, Westra claimed another first-place finish at the second intermediate sprint. His lead virtually intact for another day and the breakaway’s gap holding at 2:35. Fighting a vicious headwind, the breakaway began to lose time to the charging peloton. Mannion fell off the break with about fifteen miles to go and was quickly absorbed back into the field. Schleck and Westra pulled the plug with eleven miles to go. Beyer set out on his own, but he ran a fool’s errand as the pack caught him with just under ten miles to go.

 

Irizar (RLT) took a flyer 3 miles out, forcing Cannondale and Garmin to spend some energy reeling him in. Cannondale’s leadout train looked perfect in the final 3 kilometers, with Peter Sagan sitting comfortably at the end of the line. After all the shuffling, bumping, pushing, and shoving, Sagan managed to come out of nowhere, taking the long way around Tyler Farrar to seal his first win of the 2013 Amgen Tour of California.

 

Final:

1. Peter Sagan (CAN)

2. Michael Matthews (OGE)

3. Tyler Farrar (GRS)

4. Gianni Meersman (OPQ)

5. Boy Van Poppel (VCD)

6. Thor Hushovd (BMC)

7. Alexander Candelario (OPM)

8. Sylvain Chavanel (OPQ)

9. Zakkari Dempster (TNE)

10. Michael Morkov (TST)