Hushovd says he was boxed in on day two of Tour of Beijing, lost race lead as a result
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Saturday, October 12, 2013

Hushovd says he was boxed in on day two of Tour of Beijing, lost race lead as a result

by VeloNation Press at 7:51 AM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Tour of Beijing
 
Norwegian rider sets target for rest of race

Thor HushovdCaught in a bad position and then getting boxed in, stage one winner Thor Hushovd lost his race lead on day two of the Tour of Beijing to the day’s victor Nacer Bouhanni (FDJ). With climbing stages coming up, the Norwegian national champion has set victory on the last day as being his next goal for the race.

The team did a great job all day,” he said after the stage. “Unfortunately, we did a big effort and we lost the stage and lost the jersey. But sometimes it's like this. They got me to three kilometres from the line and I was well placed for a while. Then things went too crazy at the end.

“I was too many places back and then tried to go, and then I got boxed in so it was over,” he said. He rolled in 27th.

Hushovd’s victory yesterday was his ninth of the season, and handed him a time bonus which was equalled today by Bouhanni. The duo are on the same time at the top of the general classification. However as the latter was eighth yesterday, his better collective placings means that Bouhanni takes over the red jersey of race leader.

The BMC Racing Team led the peloton for much of today’s stage, putting in a lot of work to try to set Hushovd up to defend his position at the top of the GC.

Directeur sportif Max Sciandri said that while things didn’t work out, he was still proud of how the riders performed. “The team did a great job to control the race. Five guys went, we never really gave them that much. You never really know with De Gendt out there, and Oliver Kaisen. They controlled it well.

“The plan was again to bring Thor to the sprint. It was a little bit of a tricky finish, we didn’t know what we going into the last kilometre. But the team did a good job, it just didn’t happen. I am happy with the team, Thor is second overall and we still have a good part of the race to come.”

His comment appears to suggest that Hushovd could fight back, but the rider himself has doubts. “Tomorrow is a harder race, it starts with a hilly roads,” he said, playing down thoughts of taking red again.

Instead, he will likely conserve his energy and then try again for success on Tuesday’s race to Bird’s Nest Piazza. “I think now it is the last stage in the centre of Beijing…that is my next chance,” he stated, looking at that day as being his best chance of clocking up what would be his tenth win of the season.

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