Tour of Austria, Stage 4: Hermans Third8. July 2015, Dobratsch (AUT) — Road Team
Ben Hermans of the BMC Racing Team finished third on Wednesday's mountain-top finish at the Tour of Austria to ride into second place overall with four days of the race to go.
Hermans is two seconds behind new race leader Jan Hirt (CCC Sprandi Polkowice), who was runner-up on the stage to Victor De La Parte (Team Vorarlberg). Hermans arrived nine seconds after the pair as overnight leader Angel Vicioso (Team Katusha) was dropped earlier on the 16-kilometer finishing climb.
"I did not expect there to be some flat parts on the climb," Hermans said. "Three or four times you could recover a bit. The final four kilometers, it was everybody for himself. I tried to follow the first guys but I could not close the gap."
Winner of Brabantse Pijl in April and a stage of the Tour de Yorkshire in May, Hermans said he is looking forward to more climbing, including the ascent of the Kitzbüheler Horn on Friday. The 7.7-kilometer climb averages 12 percent gradient.
"It is a really steep climb but I know it," he said. "I have done it two times before and I really like this climb. So I hope to be good there."
BMC Racing Team's Brent Bookwalter finished 10th and moved up one spot to ninth overall, 47 seconds back. Hermans's performance that vaulted him from ninth to second overall followed Tuesday's stage win by teammate Rick Zabel.
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