Bevin Continues BMC Racing Team’s Run of Top Ten Finishes at Critérium du Dauphiné5. June 2018 — Road Team
After finishing fifth on the prologue, Patrick Bevin continued the team’s run of top ten finish at the Critérium du Dauphiné today by sprinting to eighth while, Brent Bookwalter and Damiano Caruso finished safely behind to remain in the top ten overall heading into tomorrow’s team time trial.
The day’s breakaway formed almost immediately on stage 2 with four riders going clear the moment the flag dropped in Montbrison and opening up an advantage that was nearing the two-minute mark after just 3km of racing.
From there, the gap continued to grow out to almost seven minutes on the undulating opening section of the day before the real climbing began just shy of the half-way mark on the 181km route to Belleville.
By the time the race reached the summit of the category three Col de Cambuse, a 5km long climb with an average gradient of 4.6%, the peloton had regained control and pulled the early breakaway back to within 4’30”.
The chase heated up over the next three climbs and as the main bunch reached the top of the fifth and final ascent of the day, the Col du Fût d’Avenas, with 30km to go, the three remaining leaders were sitting just one minute up the road.
It was then a largely downhill run into the finish line with the peloton, which had been whittled down due to the intense pace on the 3.8km long climb, strung out into single file as the gap was pulled back to ten seconds inside the final 10km.
Nikita Stalnov (Astana Pro Team) was the last man standing at the front of the race after going solo in the closing kilometers of the day but eventually, he was swept up by a determined peloton just after the flamme rouge.
It wasn’t a straightforward final with a number of roundabouts to tackle before the finish line came into view and in the end, the stage win came down to a predictably hectic bunch sprint for the line.
Bevin, who was a little further down the pack, launched his sprint early, and moved through the field and up to the front with ease before finishing eighth behind the stage winner, Pascal Ackermann (BORA-hansgrohe).
Bookwalter and Caruso also finished safely in the first group and they continue to sit eighth and tenth respectively on the General Classification, 13 and 17 seconds behind new race leader, Daryl Impey (Mitchelton-SCOTT), who inherited the leader’s jersey after finishing third behind Ackermann.
Quotes From the Finish Line:
“I was quite far back coming into the last kilometer and I got a run with around 500m to go and ended up opening up with 400m to go. I used some of that momentum and gave it a crack. I am not a pure sprinter at all so sometimes if you can get the timing just right on a sprint like that and you’ve got the legs you might stay away. I got mowed down in the last 150m, I just didn’t really have it as I spent a lot of energy getting to that point but I had to try something. By that point, you can’t be on the brakes waiting to go again. It was worth a try and ultimately I finished inside the top ten.”
“When you’re going downhill for the last 25km and have a handful of roundabouts in the last few kilometers, it’s always going to be a bit dicey. Plus, with reduced trains of sprinters, there’s no control and sometimes it’s harder to navigate than a full-blown bunch sprint because every time you get to the front you just get swamped. I think it was pretty hectic and it was always going to be like that when you have a stage with 2000m of climbing in 50-60km.”
“I have started to really enjoy team time trials and I feel like I am a good part of that squad. Obviously, my time trial legs are good and my form, in general, is good I think. It wasn’t easy to get there today and I got there without any issue so I am looking forward to tomorrow. Executing the team time trial is going to be hard. There are some high caliber squads here so we have our work cut out for sure but we will give it a good go.”
“It was another bonkers day out there in my opinion. It was pretty nervous in the last 50km and I think that is sort of the Dauphiné for you. I’ve blocked it out of my memory but it’s all coming back now. We tend to start the final stress about an hour or two out from the finish. There was nothing too out of this world to figure out today, it was just up and down and twisty all day and then a little selective over the final climb. I thought with a smaller group, that it would calm it down a little bit but everyone was still fighting and bashing bars so, tomorrow I am looking forward to just riding with my teammates.”
“On paper, this maybe isn’t the deepest team time trial squad we’ve ever put together but that being said, I think we’ve all been part of team time trial wins and we know how to do it. We may not be the favorites for the race but I think we are confident in our abilities and we will try to put in a good one.”
Critérium du Dauphiné
Stage 2: Montbrison > Belleville, 181km
Top 3: 1. Pascal Ackermann (BORA-hansgrohe) 2. Edvald Boasson Hagen (Team Dimension Data) 3. Daryl Impey (Mitchelton-SCOTT)
BMC Racing Team Top 3: 8. Patrick Bevin 23. Damiano Caruso 33. Joey Rosskopf