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Klaas Lodewyck (second from right) registered his third top 10 finish of the season. (©BMC/Tim de Waele.)
Klaas Lodewyck (second from right) registered his third top 10 finish of the season. (©BMC/Tim de Waele.)

Vuelta a España, Stage 2: Lodewyck Fifth

19. August 2012

Klaas Lodewyck sprinted to fifth place for the BMC Racing Team Sunday at the Vuelta a España, narrowly missing out on a podium place in the slightly uphill sprint at the end of the 181.4-kilometer race.

Help From Ballan

On a day when temperatures soared to 44 degrees Celsius (111 degrees Fahrenheit), Lodewyck said he relied on teammate and past world road champion Alessandro Ballan to get him in an ideal position. "I asked him to drop me off with 1.5 km to go and told him I'd take a wheel," Lodewyck said. "I got on the wheel of Gert Steegmans (Omega Pharma-Quick Step) because his whole team was there, but in the end they got stuck. So I passed them on the right and went full gas to the front. But the last 50 meters were too much for me and two guys passed me." John Degenkolb (Argos-Shimano) narrowly took the win ahead of Allan Davis (Orica-GreenEDGE) and Ben Swift (Sky Procycling).

Hard Finish Ahead

BMC Racing Team Directeur Sportif John Lelangue said with five riders hovering in the top 20 (Ballan 10th, Philippe Gilbert 11th, Amaël Moinard 16th, Brent Bookwalter 18th and Steve Morabito 19th) and all of them only 10 seconds off the lead of Jonathan Castroviejo (Movistar Team), the squad is in good position for Monday's 155.3 km stage that is expected to shuffle the overall standings. The Category 1 climb of the Alto de Arrate comes in the final  10 km. "Most important for us is to protect Steve and Brent and maybe Amaël," Lelangue said. "The good thing is we don't have the pressure of the race on our shoulders. But most important is to be regular with those three guys and then we'll take it day by day.&qu