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Greg Van Avermaet (right) rode in the comfort of the peloton while teammate Martin Kohler was up ahead in the breakaway. (Photo by Sean Weide, BMC Racing Team.)
Greg Van Avermaet (right) rode in the comfort of the peloton while teammate Martin Kohler was up ahead in the breakaway. (Photo by Sean Weide, BMC Racing Team.)

Van Avermaet Sixth At GP Kanton Aargau-Gippingen

6. juni 2013

Greg Van Avermaet sprinted to sixth place for the BMC Racing Team Thursday at GP Kanton Aargau-Gippingen after teammate Martin Kohler was in the breakaway for much of the 181.5-kilometer race on a hilly circuit in Switzerland.

Ballan's First Race Back
The race marked the return of BMC Racing Team's Alessandro Ballan. The past world road champion was seriously hurt in a training crash in December, but rode the first 150 km before withdrawing. "I am happy because it was not an easy race at the start," Ballan said. "The first three laps were really, really fast. I wasn't really in condition to do that speed but I was feeling better every lap and felt good today. I hope I feel better every race." Kohler, the Swiss national road champion, said his eight-man breakaway was working well after escaping on the second of 15 laps. But with their advantage hovering at barely four minutes, a truck pulled onto the course near the finish line and blocked the entire road. "They didn't stop the peloton, so we only had two minutes left," Kohler said. "From then on, every other guy was not riding anymore or taking a break. It was a bit of a strange race." After the last of the escapees was brought back inside 25 km to go, several attacks whittled the lead group to fewer than 20 riders. The BMC Racing Team had Mathias Frank and Van Avermaet still in contention. "Mathias tried to help me in the sprint but he wasn't feeling good any more and I wasn't either," Van Avermaet said. "I was feeling a little sick last week so my sprint was not what I was expecting."

Listen to complete comments from Ballan, Kohler and Van Avermaet on the BMC Racing Team Audio Line.