Garmin-Sharp not giving up after a hard day on Genting Highlands
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Monday, February 25, 2013

Garmin-Sharp not giving up after a hard day on Genting Highlands

by Ben Atkins at 9:25 AM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Tour de Langkawi
 
Nathan Haas and Peter Stetina both still in the top ten following Langkawi’s Queen stage

nathan haasGarmin-Sharp went on the offensive on the steep climb to Genting Highlands, at the end of the fifth stage of the Tour de Langkawi and, despite coming away empty handed, the American team is not giving up the fight. The stage was won by Colombian Julian Arredondo of Nippo-De Rosa, who also took over the race lead, while Garmin-Sharp’s climbers Peter Stetina and Nathan Haas came in fifth and tenth respectively.

“That’s Genting,” Haas said to VeloNation at the top of the climb. “It’s a World famous climb; it was a nice experience anyway.

“To be honest, the real star was our sprinter Steele Von Hoff, and Pete Stetina did a great job,” the Australian explained. “It’s February, it’s Pete’s first race this season, so you never know where you’re going to be. He’s very confident with all the training, but I think he’s just missing that little bit of race intensity.

“So we’re not disappointed, we’re actually quite proud of how we went.”

Haas’ tenth place on the stage lifted him to ninth overall, while fifth for Stetina put him up to fourth. With five flat stages to go the opportunities to take time from those above them will be few and far between, but American Stetina is not ready to throw in the towel just yet.

“It was hard,” he told VeloNation at the finish. “We did the best we could, and the team rode great, and put a lot of faith in me. When the Nippo guys took over, our team did a lot; even Steele was pulling with 30 guys left in the field. We took control of the race, and the yellow jersey was dropped, and the Nippo guy took over right at the base of the final kick.

“When him and [Orica-GreenEdge’s Pieter] Weening took off I tried to follow and I maybe went a little too deep,” Stetina explained, “and Pardilla - who was doing his own pace - was able to come by me, and I was able to limit my losses.”

Garmin-Sharp is now one of three teams - along with Nippo-De Rosa and MTN-Qhubeka - that has two riders in the top ten, and the American team seems reluctant to give up the fight just yet.

“Nathan was able to limit his losses too, it looks like,” Stetina said, “and so we still have a few cards to play; this thing is only half over.”

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