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George Hincapie (center) spoke with BMC Racing Team Assistant Director Michael Sayers (right) after the race. Greg Van Avermaet (left) finished just ahead of Hincapie in the stage. (Bob Cullinan photo.)
George Hincapie (center) spoke with BMC Racing Team Assistant Director Michael Sayers (right) after the race. Greg Van Avermaet (left) finished just ahead of Hincapie in the stage. (Bob Cullinan photo.)

Amgen Tour of California, Stage 1: Two In The Top 10

14. May 2012

Greg Van Avermaet was fifth and George Hincapie was sixth for the BMC Racing Team on the opening stage of the Amgen Tour of California Sunday.

Hincapie Avoids Crash
The 186.5 kilometer race that started and finished in Santa Rosa – where the BMC Racing Team is headquartered – was marred by a pile-up just outside the final three kilometers. Hincapie said he was nearly involved. "Michael Matthews from Rabobank hit my wheel and crashed right behind me," the three-time U.S. national road champion said. "In the sprint, I tried bringing Greg up with a kilometer to go and we were in good position. Then he was on a good wheel, so I just tried to get out of the way. I felt pretty good today, especially for my first race since Paris-Roubaix." Peter Sagan (Liquigas-Cannondale) took the win ahead of Heinrich Haussler (Garmin-Barracuda). Van Avermaet said he was pleased with his sixth top-five finish of the season. "I was suffering on the climbs, but I made it and we did our best in the sprint," he said. "I tried to follow Haussler to have a good result but to beat Sagan wasn't possible. He's in really good shape and looked good on the climbs, too."