BMC Racing Team crash puts paid to Phinney’s classification ambitions in ENECO Tour
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Wednesday, August 8, 2012

BMC Racing Team crash puts paid to Phinney’s classification ambitions in ENECO Tour

by Shane Stokes at 6:44 AM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Eneco Tour
American may refocus sights on individual time trial

Taylor PhinneyThird overall after Monday’s opening stage, Taylor Phinney’s push for a strong overall result was foiled by a crash involving other BMC Racing Team riders in yesterday’s stage of the Eneco Tour.

Eight kilometres into a team time trial they were determined to try to win, Manuel Quinziato and Klaas Lodewyck were caught out and hit the deck. The team’s assistant Max Sciandri explained how it happened. “We were not in a perfect line, so I asked to Alessandro (Ballan) to move. I saw Greg (Van Avermaet) who was just behind so I said, ‘slow down,’ but instead of going easy he kind of stopped pedalling. They then hit each other in the middle and that’s how Quinziato and Klaas went down.”

The team’s problem was compounded by the fact that two other riders were also in difficulty, yet several of its riders would have to stay together to register for a time. Adam Blythe had been dropped early on, then Marcus Burghardt also got into big difficulty.

“He was not going well so we had to wait for him many times,” said Sciandri. “Today, we were thinking about winning, but in the end it was a disaster.” They team finished one minute ten seconds behind the winners Orica GreenEdge.

Phinney had started the stage third overall, just six seconds off yellow; by the end, he had dropped to 100th, one minute six seconds behind the new leader, Jens Keukeleire of that Orica team.

The young American will be frustrated by the development, particularly as he was hungry for a result after near misses in the Olympics. He was fourth in both the road race and time trial there.

He also was psyched by the fact that last year he won the prologue and took fourth overall in the Eneco Tour. Five stages remain but with such a big deficit now to overcome, Phinney will likely now refocus on trying to win Saturday’s 17.4km time trial in Ardooie.

He may not have had much luck yesterday, but he undoubtedly has some very good post-Olympic form. There will be chances ahead to capitalize on that.


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