Three in Top Ten As Mt. Nebo Shakes Up GC at Tour of Utah3. August 2016, Torrey, Utah (USA) — Road Team
Three BMC Racing Team riders finished inside the top ten on Larry H. Miller Tour of Utah Stage 3 after a fast and rolling descent into Payson saw Lachlan Morton (Jelly Belly p/b Maxxis) take victory and the overall lead of the race.
As the day’s early breakaway was caught at the beginning of the Category 1 climb up Mt. Nebo, the pace of the peloton picked up and attacks quickly followed.
With three riders working together at the front of the race, BMC Racing Team found themselves spread out across the road with Darwin Atapuma and Rob Britton (Rally Cycling) the second group of the road being chased by Taylor Eisenhart and Joey Rosskopf.
Eventually Eisenhart and Rosskopf were able to bridge the gap to Atapuma and the group worked together on the final descent to try an bring the gap down as much as possible to the leading trio.
It was Rosskopf who crossed the line first to finish fourth, 1 minutes and 22 seconds behind Morton, while Atapuma and Eisenhart were sixth and seventh respectively.
All three riders now sit inside the top ten on the General Classification with Atapuma sitting fourth followed by Rosskopf in fifth, both 1 minute 32 seconds behind Morton, and Eisenhart seventh, 1 minute 34 seconds back.
Quotes from the Finish Line
"On a 10 kilometer steep section in the middle of the climb, I was riding at my own pace behind and I could see TJ drop pretty much everyone apart from five riders in that lead group and it wasn't until they started attacking that he dropped back and I could catch him. He was pretty incredible today. We knew the time checks to Darwin as we chased together and when the climb opened up as we reached the KOM, we could see them ahead of us and could work out where we were on the road in comparison.’
“It was good to be together rather than spread out along the road as the last 5km to KOM were rolling and it didn’t descent right away so you benefit from having someone to work with on a section like this. He could help me over the climbs then I could add some power on the flatter sections to reach Atapuma and help minimise our loses. Everyone is still riding strong here so there is a lot of confidence and motivation within the team.”
"This is my first preview of life with the pros and so far it’s been incredible. Especially to be racing in my home state and past my home town.”
“All day today we had Fabian [Lienhard], Rick [Zabel] and [Tom] Bohli working really hard on the front to control the breakaway and then we set a good pace going onto the climb. When Morton attacked, Darwin told me to stay calm and keep my own pace which I was able to do until the attack from Costa which he followed.”
“At that point I thought I was done and I looked back and saw that I had dropped some main GC riders. Joey was then catching up to me so I sat up and allowed us to come back together so we could bridge the gap over to Atapuma."
“In training before the race I spent a lot of time on the climbs with Atapuma. He is a really experienced rider and it’s amazing to be able to race with him and work for him. I said before the race that I wanted to do the best I can to support the other riders and that I wanted to be one of the last guys on the climbs for Atampuma. I think I proved that I can do that today which is amazing.”
Sports Director, Jackson Stewart:
“As we got to Mt. Nebo, Jelly Belly we setting a good pace on the climb and we were working at the front as well but almost immediately Morton attacked followed by Talansky and then Costa and Darwin made a move but Atapuma found himself stuck in between two groups with the other rider. Joey and TJ were left setting the pace and were dropping riders from them group, they weren’t really attacking it was just the pace that they were setting was too high for some guys.”
“I knew that we needed to catch Darwin as there was still 35 kilometers to go over the top of Mt. Nevo and eventually with 22 kilometers to go we have atapuma wait for them. From then they chased as much as they could and brought the gap down to around 1 minute 20 seconds. It was a really hard day of climbing today and some strong time trailers went up the road and weren’t able to bring them back. The guys gave it everything today and we were able control the group for a good portion of the stage.”
Larry H. Miller Tour of Utah
Stage 3: Richfield - Payson, 192km
Top 3: 1. Lachlan Morton (Jelly Belly p/b Maxxis) 2. Adrien Costa (Axeon Hagens Berman) 3. Andrew Talansky (Cannondale Drapac)
BMC Racing Team Top 3: 4. Joey Rosskopf 6. Darwin Atapuma 7. Taylor Eisenhart
BMC Racing Team Flickr Gallery
See photos from the race.