Thursday, May 15, 2014

Tour of California: Will Routley Claims Breakaway Win

May 14, Stage 4: Monterey - Cambria 168.9km

Wiggins retains his overall lead after stage four

William Routley (Optum p/b Kelly Benefit Strategies) rode the perfect race during stage 4 of the Tour of California on Wednesday. Routley, a member of the day's ultimately successful break, not only won all three KOMs, but also won the stage. Gregory Daniel (Bissell Development Team) and Kevin De Mesmaeker (Team Novo Nordisk) rounded out the top three on the day.

Race leader Bradley Wiggins (Team Sky) successfully defended his jersey, with no time lost or gained to runner-up Rohan Dennis (Garmin-Sharp).

The 165.1km stage down the California coast from Monterey to Cambria featured one sprint and three major climbs, none of which were greater than a category 3. The last climb came just over 40km from the finish, leaving plenty of time for the sprinters' teams to bring things together for a final bunch gallop.

Except the peloton waited too long to get serious about chasing and failed to make the catch, leaving sprinters Mark Cavendish (Omega Pharma Quick Step) and Peter Sagan (Cannondale) frustrated as missing out on a possible stage win.

The six-rider breakaway that escaped the bunch just a few kilometers into the stage included Daniel, Christopher Jones (UnitedHealthcare), Jonny Clarke (UnitedHealthcare), De Masmaeker, Matt Cooke (Jamis-Hagens Berman) and mountains classification leader Routley.

The leaders, all of whom were well down on the general classification, cooperated well together and quickly started building their advantage, which ballooned to nearly four minutes but held there as the peloton didn't seem to want let the escapees have too long a leash.

Routley collected maximum points on each of the day's KOMs, while Jones won the only intermediate sprint.

As the closing kilometers neared, the sprinters' teams joined Team Sky in the chase, but in the end they left it a little too late.

The break's six riders worked well together and smartly waited long enough to begin their games with each other. After a few moves by the two UnitedHealthcare riders, De Masmaeker made the first serious final move, but he was countered by Routley, who surged toward the line for the win.
Cavendish won the field sprint for seventh ahead of Sagan.

Source and For Full Results: Cycling News 

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