Tour de France Stage 2: “It's far from over”3. July 2016, Cherbourg (FRA) — Road Team
It was a day of mixed emotions on Stage 2 of the Tour de France with Greg Van Avermaet finishing in eighth place, and Richie Porte suffering a flat tire in the final five kilometers to finish 1’45” behind.
Tejay van Garderen put in a solid effort to finish with the General Classification contenders, and move into the top twenty overall.
The 183 kilometer stage included a tricky uphill finish which Van Avermaet had his sights set on for the stage win. With 50 kilometers to go the pace in the bunch picked up as a four-rider breakaway still held an advantage of over five minutes. BMC Racing Team riders were perfectly positioned at the front of the peloton trying to reel the breakaway in, when Porte had to stop and change his rear tire and lose time in the crucial last kilometers of the stage.
Van Avermaet held on to contest the sprint, which saw his top ten finish elevate him to sixth place on the General Classification.
Quotes of the Day
“It was a disaster. But what can you do when you are sitting second wheel, in the perfect position. I don’t know what I did but the next thing I know, my rear tire went down and I had to try and get back through the peloton. I guess you can only move on. Marcus Burghardt came back but when you are going that fast there’s not much you can do in terms of a bike change. It all just happened so quickly that by the time Burghardt came back the bunch was gone anyhow.”
“The Tour de France is far from over. It’s quite a hard one to take but at the end of the day I guess we just pretend it never happened and wait for the mountains to come. It’s only a bike race isn’t it? So I’m sure the sun will come up tomorrow.”
Tejay van Garderen:
“I was up there in the final. It was a hard finish. I was full gas at the end. It was hard for the 40-50km leading into the climb so it definitely shook things up more than I expected. I feel horrible for Richie. The only thing I can say is that when you get to the third week of the Tour de France, two minutes could mean nothing. Contador also lost 50 seconds. The Tour is a marathon so hopefully Richie can stay strong in his head. Richie and I are still co-leaders. Anything can happen. Today I had to stay focused on not losing time.”
Greg Van Avermaet:
“Today we had two objectives; protecting Tejay and Richie and going for the stage win. We kept together in front until the last climb and then everyone had to go their own way. I did a good sprint even though I was on my own. I was in a good position.”
“The chase to pull the breakaway came late. At first some teams were riding but then no one was, and then we did as we approached the climb to be safe at the front. The roads were narrow and it’s always tricky so it’s good that no one crashed.”
See below for audio files from Porte, van Garderen and Van Avermaet.
Tour de France
Stage 2 Saint-Lo > Cherbourg (183km)
Top 3: Peter Sagan (Tinkoff), Julien Alaphilippe (Etixx-Quick Step), Alejandro Valverde (Movistar Team)
BMC Racing Team Top 3: 8. Greg Van Avermaet, 19. Tejay van Garderen, 81. Richie Porte
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BMC Racing Team Audio Line
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