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Tejay van Garderen (leading) rode away from Rigoberto Uran to finish runner-up and move into second overall. (©BMC/Graham Watson.)
Tejay van Garderen (leading) rode away from Rigoberto Uran to finish runner-up and move into second overall. (©BMC/Graham Watson.)

Tour of Oman, Stage 5: Van Garderen Runner-Up

22. February 2014

Tejay van Garderen of the BMC Racing Team climbed his way into second overall Saturday at the Tour of Oman with a runner-up performance to Chris Froome (Team Sky) on the finish at Green Mountain.

Tempo To The Top
Van Garderen said he remained patient after an attack by Froome's teammate, Sergio Henao, with 2.5 kilometers to go, and another by Robert Gesink (Belkin Pro Cycling), in an unsuccessful attempt to close the gap. "Everyone looked pretty tired, so I countered Gesink," van Garderen said. "My thoughts were, if I could get away clean up to Henao, that Froome would maybe be kind of flicked because he wouldn't be able to chase down his teammate. He would be stuck there tactically. But he was able to jump straight away onto my wheel. So it was me, Froome and Rigoberto Uran closing down on Henao." When van Garderen pulled even with Henao, Froome countered. "That was the last we saw of him," van Garderen said of last year's Tour de France winner. "I just made a tempo up to the top. I didn't even try to follow. I thought if I tried to follow, I might blow up." Froome finished 22 seconds ahead of van Garderen to take the overall lead. Uran (Omega Pharma-Quick Step) was third, 33 seconds back. With one day of the race to go, van Garderen is 26 seconds behind Froome; Uran is third, at 31 seconds.

In Prime Position
The BMC Racing Team went to work late in the 147.5-km race to make sure van Garderen was in prime position at the beginning of the 5.7-km climb of Green Mountain, which averages 10.5 percent. "The whole team was in a really good position at the front of the bunch and they did a very good job to bring the climbers into the climb in the first positions," said BMC Racing Team's Peter Velits, winner of this race in 2012. Sport Director Valerio Piva said van Garderen's result bodes well for the start of his season. "In the morning, we didn't know Tejay's condition," Piva said. "But he surprised me today in a very positive way. Arriving second behind Froome is a good start. If you look at the guys who are here, they are also the contenders for the Tour de France and leaders of the big teams. So I'm very happy for Tejay and the team being around him."

Listen to complete comments from Piva, van Garderen and Velits on the BMC Racing Team's Audio Line.

See photos from the race on the BMC Racing Team's Flickr gallery.

View videos from the race on the BMC Racing Team's YouTube channel.